The coaching team of the Blue Tigers comes with a lot of experience under their belt.
Igor Stimac took over as head coach of the Indian national football team on 15 May 2019, replacing the outgoing Stephen Constantine. The former Croatia coach came to India with a lot of promise and an aim to improve on their performance in the AFC Asian Cup in 2019.
The tactician has the assistance of a team of extremely talented coaches who are a part of his staff. The staff comprises of a goalkeeping coach, a fitness coach and an Indian assistant coach.
Igor Stimac carefully chose the suitable people to be a part of the backroom staff which works on several levels. On that note, today Khel Now takes a look at the 53-year-old’s coaching and technical staff, who has been tasked with improving the Indian team’s performances.
Igor Stimac – Head Coach
Igor Stimac is the boss, the head coach, the man who leads the staff of the Indian national team. As a player, he helped Croatia finish third in the 1998 FIFA World Cup. He also managed the Croatian national team from July 2012 to October 2013, with a win percentage of 53.3%, which is his highest in any job. Stimac has also worked with teams like NK Zagreb, NK Zadar, Sepahan SC and Al-Shahaniya SC.
The head coach has given a lot of young Indian players the chance to represent the national team. He continues to work towards revamping the playing style of the squad, moving away from the long ball approach of the past.
However, results have taken a hit due to his experimentation. India have won only one game in 12 outings under the tactician. He will hope to improve on the results to prolong his stay at the helm.
Shanmugam Venkatesh – Assistant Coach
Shanmugam Venkatesh is the assistant to Igor Stimac at the senior national team. The former player is also working with Indian Arrows and the India U-19 team. He is the only Indian who is part of Stimac’s backroom staff and holds an AFC A Licence in football coaching.
As a player, Venkatesh was an attacking midfielder. The 43-year-old featured for teams like East Bengal, Mahindra United, Mohun Bagan, and Pune FC among others. Most notably, he has a good eye for identifying young players, especially given his work with development sides.
Tomislav Rogic – Goalkeeping Coach
Tomislav Rogic is the goalkeeping coach for the Indian national team. He is responsible for working with the custodians of the team and improving their performances. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, the only Indian player to represent a club in the UEFA Europa League, hailed him as the best goalkeeping coach he has worked with.
The Croatian has experience of working with teams like Belgium’s Club Brugge. He has also coached Russian club Zenit St. Petersburg, Ukraine’s Shakhtar Donetsk and Croatian club HNK Hajduk Split.
Luka Radman – Fitness Coach
Luka Radman is the fitness coach of the Indian national team. He is responsible for improving the strength and overall conditioning of the players. Indian players have taken huge strides in recent times in terms of fitness and industry on the pitch. The credit has to go to Radman for the clear step up in physical output from the players.
Luka Radman previously worked with Igor Stimac at the Croatian national team during the 1998 FIFA World Cup, the Croatian Men’s Basketball Team (silver medal) at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games. Furthermore, he also worked with the Croatian Men’s Water Polo Team (silver medal) at the 1999 European Championship, among others. He was an Olympic weightlifter back in the day and is popularly known as ‘The Professor.’