New Delhi: The All India Football Federation (AIFF) on Wednesday announced the appointment of former Croatia international Igor Stimac as the head coach of the Indian men's national team after AIFF's Executive Committee ratified the recommendation by the Technical Committee.
Stimac will now succeed Stephen Constantine and has been signed on a two-year contract.
As coach, Stimac's major achievement was guiding Croatia to qualify for the FIFA World Cup in Brazil in 2014. His last assignment was with Al-Shahania Club in Qatar.
As a player, he was part the of the Croatia national squad which finished third in the FIFA World Cup in France in 1998 and a member of the Croatia national squad which qualified for the quarterfinals of the UEFA European Championship 1996 (Euro) in England.
Besides, he was also a part of the Yugoslavia U-19 national team which won the FIFA U-20 World Cup held in Chile in 1987.
Welcoming Stimac to Indian football, AIFF President Praful Patel said: "Igor is the right candidate to coach the Blue Tigers. I welcome him on board. Indian Football is going through a transition, and I am confident his vast experience will guide us to higher echelons."
Kushal Das, General Secretary, AIFF, felt: "Indian football will benefit immensely under Igor Stimac.
"His credentials as a coach and experience as a player are sure to add immense value to the players and the Indian Football ecosystem. The momentum gained needs to be sustained," Das said.
Stimac's first assignment will be the Kings Cup in Buriram, Thailand, where the Blue Tigers play Curacao in their first match on June 5.