THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

AIFF to organize first-ever Scouting Workshop

Indian national football team
Indian national football team

Photo Courtesy: AIFF Media

It’s related to the age-old debate of Indian Football. Is the vastness of the Country a boon or a bane?

At his Cabin at AIFF Football House, National Coach Stephen Constantine leans back in his Chair and smiles. “It gives us more places to look at. The more you will look the more you will find. Scouting is a never ending process,” he opines. “One of my targets is to develop the Football culture in India.”

The Walls in his Office are painted Blue & White, pictures of the National squad and their autographed jerseys hang on the wall along with the National List of Scouts who have been identified around India. The effort to change the ‘Football culture,’ is kicking-off the first of its kind Scouting Workshop in Goa under renowned scout Derek Bragg.

The Workshop will continue for three days – from July 12 to 14, 2015. Given India’s Football scenario, it’s a virgin concept – a Scouting Workshop.

“Derek is one of the most experienced scouts Worldwide. He has been scouting for many years at the domestic and International level including for Clubs and National Teams. He has set up scouting seminars workshops and policies around the Globe,” Constantine informs.

All of All India Football Federation’s regional scouts would be attending the Workshop. Besides AIFF U-17 World Cup Head Coach Nicolai Adam and AIFF U-19 National Head Coach Lee Johnson would also be attending, as would be some other Coaches and observers.

Is scouting a specialized job? Or can it be done by anyone?

“Scouts are the eyes of the Coach. When you scout a Player you are looking for specific attributes. So in order to scout, you require more than just a basic knowledge of the game,” he states. “It’s pertinent for a scout to understand what the Coach wants and what the Coach needs. The wants or the needs of the scout don’t matter at all.”

“When you scout you got to know what you are looking for. And most importantly you ought to know what you have. There are a number of ways of how you can scout. At one time, you maybe scouting juniors the next moment you may be scouting for Senior players both very different and then you may be asked to Scout the opposition or a particular Teams, it’s a science, All of them are different,” Constantine explains.

You need to be able to identify specific traits from each Player in each position and it needs to be in line with the Head Coach, be it for the Club or the National Team.”

“Let me tell you that at the recent trials in Maharashtra…,” Constantine leans back in his chair again. “We scouted a boy who traveled some seven hours from Mumbai for trials. He comes from a tiny village and looks a very bright prospect. We want to find more of them. And I know there are plenty,” he pronounces, as he looks to the walls.

(Report & Photo Courtesy AIFF Media)