All India Football Federation (AIFF) Technical Director Rob Baan has stated his disappointment about the ranking of the Indian national team and asked to take a realistic view on the current situation of the game in India.
Baan, addressing the attendees of the 4th FICCI Global Sports Summit, told: “We should be ashamed of the low rankings!”
“A country like Iceland, which has around 60,000 population are ranked around 60 in FIFA charts and India is now at 168th. We have just 114 points and it is so much less in numbers,” the Dutchman continued during the panel discussion entitled “Mission Rank 100: Myth or Reality?”.
“We should not find excuses. We lost to Singapore 0-2 in the international friendly and it means we were not good enough. We have a lot of work to do and there are so many gaping holes.”
“FIFA rankings in general give picture of the standard of football in a country. Spain is number one in FIFA rankings and rightly so,” said Baan. “The Netherlands were second some time back and they were now pushed down to sixth after losing a few games”
“You gain points by winning games. You cannot play Spain and lose 0-10. So you have to go step by step to rise in the rankings.”
“It is possible we can be in top 100 by 2018. To do that we have to start work from the grassroot level. We have to focus on the youth development and infrastructure, academies, education of coaches,” Baan concluded.
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