The Blue Tigers head coach heaped praise on skipper Sunil Chhetri and spoke about his influence on the younger generation of players.

Igor Stimac, the head coach of Indian Football Team, feels Sunil Chhetri is motivated to carry on and also hailed his valuable presence guiding the young members of the team.

In an interview with PTI, the 55-year-old said that the skipper is fitter than ever and has been taking care of himself. “He is motivated enough to keep going and very valuable to our youngsters with his attitude, professionalism and a positive mindset.”

“We (coaches) are there to provide best possible service to all our players and do justice at the end by choosing the best 11 or 23 for a game. We are happy to have Sunil with us and we will help him stay focused and motivated on his game as long as possible,” the Croatian added to his statement.

Igor Stimac, who is currently in his native country Croatia because of the coronavirus, also gave his views on AIFF’s decision on reduction of foreigners in the I-League from the upcoming season and in the Indian Super League (ISL) from the 2021-22 season. “I am happy (with the move). It is going to bring benefits to Indian football very soon,” he said.

Ever since he took over the reigns from Stephen Constantine in 2019, he has introduced many young players in the squad. When questioned about the impact of young footballers in the team, he remarked, “From the very first day we started relying on young talented players believing that our hard work and trust in them will pay us back in the near future.”

Further, he expressed his happiness watching young Indian players getting opportunities at the biggest stages. “I like when I see young players getting chances in ISL and I-League. That’s our only way of speeding up and competing with other successful Asian football countries.”

Lastly, Igor Stimac also heaped praise on the Indian Arrows project by AIFF saying, “Developing young players is mostly based and dependent on structured and professional work in football academies.”

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