Igor Stimac Threatens To Quit After Taking India To The Asian Cup 2023 Final

Head coach Igor Stimac, whose tenure runs until September, has threatened to not extend his contract after taking India to their first-ever back-to-back appearance in the AFC Asian Cup. Anwar Ali, Ishan Pandita, Sunil Chhetri, and Manvir Singh were on the scoresheet as India thrashed Hong Kong 4-0.

But the qualification for Asian Cup was secured even before the game started. Palestine’s 4-0 triumph over the Philippines confirmed the Asian Cup spot for India, as they were among the five of the best-placed runners-up of each group.

Earlier, India started their campaign with a 2-0 victory over Cambodia, then defeated Afghanistan 2-1, courtesy an injury-time strike from Abdul Samad. With three goals in the qualifiers, Chhetri also equaled Ferenc Puskas’ record of 84 international goals, and is now just two behind Lionel Messi.

Stimac praised the Indian footballers but lashed out at how the All India Football Federation (AIFF) functions. The board is in a state of chaos, and is currently under the control of the Committee Of Administrators after the Supreme Court ordered its president Praful Patel to step down. Moreover, their funding has been slashed by 85 percent in the last four years.

“We had no time to talk about contracts. We don’t even have a board. Nobody thought about how that drama could affect the players,” Stimac said at a post-match press conference on Tuesday. “I’m not getting into what is right or wrong. I’m just talking about the timing. At such an important time, such a thing is happening, is anyone normal?”

Igor Stimac said that he will renew his contracts only if certain conditions regarding the development of the game are fulfilled.

“You will hear things in the next months about changes. There will be things that will come out and there will be conditions for me to stay. Some things must change drastically and I don’t care who is on the opposite side,” concluded Stimac.

Featured Image Source: AIFF

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