With the Indian Senior National Men’s Team assembling in Mumbai for the preparatory camp for the forthcoming Hero Intercontinental Cup, Head Coach Igor Štimac mentioned that he is “looking forward” to see how the boys have worked on their individual working programmes.
In an interview with www.the-aiff.com, Štimac, who coached Croatia to qualify for the FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014, spoke at length about his plans in the camp, the response from the players, the “complicated process” of playing attractive football and much more.
How much are you looking forward to the camp?
I am eagerly waiting to get back to work. I miss my players and our daily work. I am looking forward to see how much they have done last few weeks with regards to the individual working programmes we provided to them.
How significant will the Hero Intercontinental Cup be in the team’s preparation for the World Cup Qualifiers from September?
It’s important we take the next step forward after beating Thailand on their home soil. Winning the Hero Intercontinental Cup would be great for us. But I am still not insisting on results. Instead, I would rather concentrate on improvement on ball possession, and movements without ball.
All our work has been chalked out concentrating on the upcoming FIFA World Cup Qualifiers. But obviously, every game we win on the pathway will help us to further boost our confidence.
What will you be stressing on at the camp?
As usual, we will divide the camp into two parts. In the first few days, we will work on testing the players. We will follow that up with drawing up the precise working programme, which will be our second step.
In this second step, we are going to intensify aerobic, and explosive power work during our morning sessions, and utilise our evening sessions for working on our gameplan.
How has you experience been with the boys so far?
Till now, I am extremely delighted with their commitment and willingness to learn and progress on their technical and physical abilities. To become successful in playing an attractive brand of football involves a very complicated process of work. But I stay confident that we are going to make it happen together.
What would be your message to the fans?
I would like to use this opportunity to invite all our supporters to get behind our boys and be our 12th man in Ahmedabad July 7-19, 2019.