Bhaichung Bhutia, Rob Baan, Wim Koevermans speak as the AIFF’s Coaching Seminar kicks off

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NAVI MUMBAI: You look around and are bound to be struck in awe. Among the 65 participants, all of whom who have gathered for the AIFF Coaching Seminar, there are former players all around; players whom we all have adored over the years.

There’s Prasanta Banerjee, there’s Godfrey Pereira, there’s Tanumoy Basu, there’s Khalid Jamil, there’s Syed Sabir Pasha, there’s Savio Medeira, there’s Aqueel Ansari, there’s Noushad Moosa…the list just seems to have no end.

On Monday morning, the reason for their gathering – the Seminar, kicked-off in Navi Mumbai. The Seminar, first of its kind in India, aims to produce better coaches and players with ‘match related approach.’

AIFF Technical Director Rob Baan conducted the first session of the Seminar, his ‘vision to develop Indian Football.’ That was followed by National Coach Wim Koevermans’ session in the afternoon – ‘What is Football?’ while Baan’s practical session, ‘Coaching, the Match related Approach,’ stayed the last session of the day.

The India U-17 National squad who trains at the Centre of Excellence in Goa and has come over to Navi Mumbai to take part in the practical sessions stayed Baan’s wards as the Technical Director demonstrated the ‘Match Related Approach,’ and had interactive sessions with the Coaches.

Earlier, AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das welcomed the guests and spoke on the ‘Long term future of Indian Football,’ while guest speaker, former India Captain Bhaichung Bhutia shared his experiences.

“It’s imperative we all understand the future philosophy of Indian football,” Das said. “The Seminar stays a significant step taken by our Technical Team as we need to look forward,” he added.

“Coach Education stays perhaps the most significant aspect if we are to create an Indian style of play as we have intended,” Baan stressed.

“To improve the standard of the football in the country, we need to select the best players. But prior to that, we need to train and groom them. We as Coaches stay responsible for that,” O’Donell, who will be conducting both theoretical and practical sessions in the next four days, emphasised.

The theoretical sessions are being held at the Royal Orchid Hotel in Navi Mumbai while the practical sessions at the Father Agnel ground, where the first AIFF Regional Academy is based.

National Coach Wim Koevermans maintained the Seminar gives one an opportunity to “express himself.”

“The next five-days are important. The philosophy needs to be understood by all,” Koevermans, who was a part of the Dutch squad which win the European Cup in 1988, opined.

“Let’s not stay stuck in the 60s and the 70s. Let’s embrace the new concepts,” Bhaichung commented. “From my experience, I have starved for the right kind of training for long. This initiative by AIFF is an excellent one. It’s the right beginning,” he added.

The list of participants stay as follows:

Godfrey Pereira, Noushad Moosa, Kundan Chandran, Shaikh Arshad Hussain, Abdul Azim Siddique, Nirvan Shah, Aqueel Ansari, Khalid Jamil, Raghuvir Pravin Khanolkar. Augusto D’Silva, Faruk Ahmed, Md. Yusuf Ansari (all from WIFA); Birbal Singh, Ekendra Singh, Bitan Singh (all from Manipur); R Thyagraj, Stanley Rozario, Thomas Joseph, John Kenneth Raj, Mastan Ahmed, P Muralidharan (all from Karnataka), Prasanta Banerjee, Gautam Ghosh (IFA), Parthasarathy Thulasi, Syed Sabir Pasha, CM Ranjith (all from Tamil Nadu); S Geevarghese, CJ Charles, PM Saji, Biby Thomas, Satheevan Balan, Feroz Sheriff, Narayana Menon (all from Kerala); William Koso (Nagaland); Maymol Rocky, Marcus Pachecho, Francisco Bruto da Costa, Jude Barreto, Savio Medeira, Mario Aguiar (all from Goa), Tarun Roy, Anadi Baruah (both from Delhi); Sajid Yusuf, Hilal Parray (both from J&K); Surinder Singh (Chandigarh).

Coaches from Clubs/Academies: Tanumoy Basu (Pailan Arrows); Bino George (CUK), Arun Pratap (CUK Academy); Deepak (Kerala FA Academy); Sujay Sharma, Arata Izumi (both from Pune FC); Ahmed Aslam Khan (SAI, Bangalore); Mathew D’Costa, Gavin Araujo (both from Dempo); Augustine Antao, Joaquim Crasto (both from Salgaocar); Suren Chhetri, Pranai Subba (both from United Sikkim Football Club); Richard Hood (Tata Football Academy); Manoj Kumar (Sports and Education Promotion Trust); Pradyuman Reddy (Shillong Lajong Football Club); Sunil Chaudhury, Cetano Pinho (both from ONGC); Ajit Braich (from Canada).

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