Former Croatian player and National team coach Igor Stimac is set to become the next coach of India's men's national team after being recommended by the All India Football Federation's (AIFF) technical committee reports the Hindu Sportstar.
The AIFF had received 250 applications of which Stimac, Albert Roca, Hakan Ericson and Lee Min-Sung were shortlisted, and Igor was the sole candidate to fly down to New Delhi for the interview. The recently appointed technical director, Doru Issac who was also part of the process, gave Stimac the green light.
Former Bengaluru FC coach Albert Roca was the front runner for the top job in the media owing to him leading his team to the AFC finals in 2016. However, it is believed that Roca's salary demands were more than AIFF's budget of $25,000, and the recommendation of Stimac led to talks to eventually die down.
"The technical committee has chosen Igor Stimac as the Indian football coach. He gave a splendid presentation, and his experience speaks volumes. Stimac has an impressive knowledge of Indian football, and we found him as the perfect choice," Sportstar quotes the chairman of the technical committee, Shyama Thapa.
As a player Stimac, represented Croatia 53 times and was a part of the golden generation of Croatia which finished third in the 1988 FIFA World Cup. Stimac also has an impressive resume as a coach for various Croatian clubs. As their National team coach, the Croat led them to the fourth spot on FIFA World rankings.
Stimac's first obstacle is the upcoming the King's Cup in Thailand where India is scheduled to play against Curacao on 5 June.
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