The technical committee of the All India Football Federation (AIFF) is reportedly unhappy with head coach Igor Stimac following the 2-1 defeat to Afghanistan on Tuesday.

India’s head coach Igor Stimac(AP)

At a meeting on Thursday, the members expressed unhappiness at India’s performance in the two games against Afghanistan. India drew 0-0 away in Abha, Saudi Arabia, and lost 1-2 in Guwahati. This was the first time India lost to Afghanistan at home. At 158, they are 41 slots below India in the FIFA rankings.

Hindustan Times – your fastest source for breaking news! Read now.

“Pretty much no one is happy with him after the loss in Guwahati. And we have conveyed that,” said a technical committee member. The member requested anonymity given the sensitive nature of the issue.

When the technical committee last met Stimac, virtually, in February, the chair, IM Vijayan, was quoted by an AIFF media release as saying: “… The results in Qatar (Asian Cup) are now a matter of the past. Our main focus should be on the matches ahead, in the March and June FIFA windows and that we should get the best possible results from them.”

The hitch is not waiting till June, when India play Kuwait at home and Qatar away, and removing Stimac immediately is the compensation the Croat could need to be paid. According to sources in AIFF, the new deal with Stimac is worth $30,000 every month and if he is removed because of poor performance at any time before his contract runs out in 2026, he will need to be paid the full salary. That means AIFF could be looking at $720,000 as severance package.

Given that the federation has cut over 20 crore from its competitions’ outlay in its budget for the next fiscal that could be a difficult call to take. AIFF is also looking at negotiating with Stimac to find a an amicable solution. How this drama pans out will be clear in the next few days. If it gets messy, it could also harm India’s prospects at getting a replacement.

India are currently second in group A with four points from four games, ahead of Afghanistan on goal difference and Kuwait who have three points. Qatar leads the standings with 12 points from four games. The top two teams qualify for the third round. India have never made the third round and a win against Kuwait on June 6 could assure that.

Stimac, who has said he will quit if India don’t qualify for the third round, is due to leave for home from New Delhi early on Friday.


Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *