Indian football team coach Stephen Constantine’s contract up for discussion
Stephen Constantine is likely to continue as the head coach of the Indian football team.Updated: Feb 06, 2018 21:51 IST
The All India Football Federation’s technical committee is likely to recommend a contract extension for national team coach Stephen Constantine in its meeting tomorrow.
The committee, headed by former India striker Shyam Thapa, will meet in Mumbai to take a call on whether to give Constantine another extension of his contract which ends in March.
Other members of the committee include former India players Prasanta Benerjee, Henry Menezes, Abhishek Yadav, former coach Savio Medeira and former IPL Chief Operating Officer Sundar Raman among others.
Under Constantine, India went unbeaten the whole of 2017 besides also securing an Asian Cup berth. India have remained unbeaten in 13 matches, winning in 11 and drawing twice, and had last lost a match in March 2016 in a World Cup qualifier against Turkmenistan.
The results propelled India’s FIFA rankings too. The team, which was languishing at 166 when Constantine took over in March 2015, broke into the top-100 (96) last year and is currently ranked 102.
Constantine is expected to offer an extension till the 2019 Asian Cup which will be held between January 5 and February 1 in the United Arab Emirates.
“The Indian team has done very well under Constantine and and there is no reason not to extend his contract. If you don’t do that it will send a wrong signal,” an AIFF official told PTI on the condition of anonymity.
“But it is a matter of how much extension is given to him and whether he will accept it or not,” he added.
There have been conflicting reports about Constantine’s relationship with some of his key players and in the given scenario it will have to be seen whether he would be willing to stay put for another year.
Constantine took charge of the Indian team in March 2015 for a two-year term and later in 2017 he was given a year’s extension.
This is his second stint as the 55-year-old Englishman was in-charge of the national team from 2002 to 2005.