India head coach Stephen Constantine has been asked to take temporary charge of the under-17 squad preparing for World Cup later this year.
For now, Constantine will go to Goa on Monday and stay there till Saturday, sources in the All Indian Football Federation (AIFF) told HT on Thursday. The India senior team coach couldn’t be reached for a comment.
This development comes two days after HT first reported that Constantine had let it be known to the AIFF that he was available to help after German coach Nicolai Adam quit. “It is up to them,” Constantine had said in Siliguri on Monday, referring to the AIFF.
It was learnt that AIFF president Praful Patel asked Constantine to go to Goa for a week on Thursday, sources in the AIFF said.
Along with the Sports Authority of India (SAI), the federation has started the process of finding a new coach but it is unlikely to happen soon. The under-17 squad has resumed training in Goa last week.
Shaji Prabhakaran, former FIFA Regional Development Officer for South and Central Asia, said Constantine, though in a temporary role, could help motivate the boys.
“I think his presence will motivate the boys; they will be training under the man who coaches Sunil Chhetri, someone most of these teenagers look up to, he said. “It will also send a good message across that the AIFF has stepped in with the best resource available.”