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Indian Football: We Need More Academies to Train Youngsters, says Armando Colaco

Armando Colaco

India might have had glorious days in Football but looking at the current scenario, it never seems that India had been an Asian Champion twice and had finished fourth in the 1956 Melbourne Olympic.  The dismal current scenario is due to negligence of the game at the grassroots level and the failure to impart proper training to the youths. India National Coach Armando Colaco promptly agrees to this fact.

Speaking to News Agency of International repute, Armando Colaco, the man put in charge of the Indian team after the ugly Bob Houghton saga put stressed on the importance of educating Coaches.  “The biggest problems in Indian football today are the (lack of) academies, the education of coaches along with the strength, nourishment, and the pace on the ball,”

The Dempo Coach spoke about the lack of basic and correct football technique imparted to the youngsters which makes it difficult for them to adopt when they grow older. “It’s a pity that basics are not properly taught at the grassroots to the youngsters, which makes it difficult for them when they grow and that’s why coach education is very important. We do need more and more academies to train the youngsters with basic technique requirements for modern football.”

Colaco was of the opinion that the football India play is not so bad but when it comes to playing a fast pace football, India falls back. “To some extent, the football we play is okay but the pace is not there. We are not good enough with the strength and endurance and that is why we cannot play a fast paced game.”  

With India travelling to UAE to play against the Middle East Nation in the first leg of the second round of FIFA World Cup 2014 qualifiers on July 23, Colaco was realistic when asked about India’s chance in the World Cup final. “Frankly speaking, it’s a great mountain to climb against UAE in the World Cup qualifiers. They are a very strong team. They have been together for a very, very long time and played a lot of exposure matches. We have to work hard on planning things for the next five-10 years…”

UAE are ranked 37 places above India at 110 and has been practicing in Europe for this particular World Cup Qualifiers against India. However, India, fresh from overcoming Qatar who are ranked even higher than UAE, will go into the match with full confidence, which Coach Colaco also echoed. “We are not going to succumb to the pressure but will try our level best to show an improved performance in play. They are very aggressive and understand each other very well. We are working on some strategies/tactics especially, slowing down the pace of the game.”

Colaco, one of the most successful Coach of India at the Club level took heart from India’s 2-1 victory over Qatar on Sunday and thinks the future is full of possibilities for his young side. “I have made a beginning and this bunch of youngsters, along with the seniors which I have chosen, will definitely make a mark in Indian football,” added the 58 year old before he signs off.



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