Indian football imprisoned, don't see it improving: Igor Stimac drops bombshell

Former India head coach Igor Stimac has made some bombshell claims in his press conference after getting sacked from the Indian team. Stimac has said that he does not see India improving in the next 20 years.
Indian football imprisoned, don't see it improving: Igor Stimac drops bombshell
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Indian football team head coach Igor Stimac was sacked on June 17 after his team failed to make it to the third round of the FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers. After his sacking, an agitated Stimac wrote on Twitter that he will hold a tell-all press conference where he would expose several people in Indian football. On Friday, 21 June, Stimac, in a virtual press conference made bombshell allegations against the All India Football Federation.

Speaking to a host of reporters from across India, Stimac alleged that Indian football was imprisoned in the hands of power-hungry people and was unlikely to reach a good level in the next 20 years. Stimac took sharp digs at the AIFF stating alleging that he was incorrectly sacked.

"I came with an open heart to Indian football. But your football is imprisoned. It will take a couple of decades for things to improve which I don't see happening," Stimac said in his virtual press conference.

"Not surprised about parting ways. Most of my senior players knew I had decided to leave even after had qualified for the third round. It was impossible for me to go on without proper support, full of lies and people who had only private interests," he further added.

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Indian football imprisoned, don't see it improving: Igor Stimac drops bombshell

In the same press conference, Stimac said that he was not able to take the stress of the Indian coaching job and had to get heart surgery before the Asian Cup. The former head coach also alleged that no one in the AIFF knew how to run Indian football.

“The people in AIFF don’t know how to run a football house, they don’t know how to organise cups. These people only care about power,” Stimac said.

The former coach was furious with the functioning of the AIFF and said that the Indian team did not get any technical help from the federation.

"IM Vijayan was a fantastic player but he shouldn't be the one presiding over the technical committee (TC). I told the AIFF president Kalyan Chaubey that during each camp we should have one of the members of the TC to be in the team and see what kind of work we do and what we provide our players. You think they sent someone? No one was there," the former head coach further added.

The All India Football Federation had announced on Monday, 17 June that Igor Stimac has been relieved of his duties as the head coach of the Indian men's football team. This decision follows a disappointing campaign in the FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers. The senior officials of the AIFF had an important virtual meeting which was led AIFF Vice President N.A. Haris with other key attendees included Menla Ethenpa, Anilkumar Prabhakaran, I.M. Vijayan, Climax Lawrence, and M. Satyanarayan.

Source: India Today

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