New Delhi: The All India Football Federation has decided against renewing national coach Wim Koevermans' contract beyond existing time frame of October 31 but at the same time has offered the Dutchman the job of Technical Director, overseeing the preparations of various national football teams.
"The members were certainly unhappy with India's shoddy performance against Pakistan. We will certainly be looking for a new coach once Wim's (Koevrmans) contract expires (after two International friendlies at home against Palestine)," a senior office-bearer told PTI after AIFF's executive committee meeting on Thursday.
"But he has been offered the role of Technical Director. Wim has intimated us that he has some offers from elsewhere and needs some time to think about it," the official added.
As of now, what is paramount for AIFF is to find a new foreign coach for both senior national team as well as the U-17 team that will be playing in the 2017 U-17 FIFA World Cup. "It's been a unanimous decision that both senior and U-17 team needs foreign coaches. We can have Indian assistants though," he said.
The AIFF has also shortlisted four names (two Indians and two foreigners) for the coveted post of CEO for the U-17 FIFA World Cup in India. "The final interview will be conducted by our president Praful Patel. One of the foreign recruits has his nose ahead at the moment," he said.
It has been reliably learnt that KKR Team Director Joy Bhattacharjya, who had applied for the post is not among the shortlisted candidates. Asked about reports that the sports ministry will not fund the football team's trip for the Asian Games in Incheon, he said, "We are hearing through media reports that the team won't be sent. I can tell you that twice our people have spoken to ministry officials and they have told us 'Don't worry, nothing like that will happen'," he said.
All the senior AIFF officials were invited for a High-Tea at Mukesh Ambani's residence after India Super League's logo launch in Mumbai, where famous lyricist Prasun Joshi's (who had also penned the lyrics for 2013 blockbuster 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag'), unveiled the theme song of ISL.
The song goes on the lines "100 crore bharatiyon ko do post ke beech lana haain" (Bring in 100 crore Indians between two goalposts).