AIFF tech director critical of way Indian football is run

AIFF tech director critical of way Indian football is run

New Delhi: AIFF technical director Rob Baan was today critical of the way Indian football is being run and lamented the absence of national team training centres, elite academies and lack of funds as far as implementing his `Lakshya 2022` masterplan was concerned.

"There is no national team training centre, no elite academies, no budget as far as implementing the Lakshya 2022 project is concerned," Baan said at the `Indian Football Convention Goal-13` at the FICCI House here.

"We already have the plans in place, but to implement them, all stakeholders of Indian football have to come and work together. More coordination is needed among state associations and the national federation," the 69-year-old Dutchman said.

`Lakshya 2022` aims to help India qualify for the World Cup in 2022.

Baan said that at a time when age-fudging has become the order of the day, the All India Football Federation should adopt zero-tolerance in dealing with the menace.

"The AIFF executive committee also needs to be much more serious about issues like age-fudging," he said.

As far as lack of funds and sponsors were concerned, he said, "The IMG-Reliance says that they are not able to generate funds but I say, if the plan is good, funds will come."

He also said that the I-League needs to be changed, referring to the concept of AIFF`s own team Pailan Arrows.

"The Federation`s team reflects the standard of the I-League.

"Nowhere in the world you will comes across a federation having a team of its own. But in India it`s there because clubs here have no youth development system in place."

He also said that it`s the clubs and not coaches who take a call on matters relating to football in India.

Sunil Chhetri may have created quite a buzz due to his few stints abroad -- most recently the one at Sporting Lisbon -- but Baan felt it was a "big flop".

"You call him the icon but he has not managed to play in USA and Portugal. That`s a big flop for me... As long as you can`t play in Europe how will you go up?," asked Bann.

Baan said national coach Wim Koevermans should not start investing on players, especially from developmental clubs like Pailan Arrows.