Nayeemuddin hopes to improve Bangla team

Updated: 22 August 2007 07:37 IST

A flamboyant defender, former India captain, former India coach, Arjuna and Dronacharya awardee, Syed Nayeemuddin can be introduced in many ways.

Nayeemuddin hopes to improve Bangla team

New Delhi:

A flamboyant defender, former India captain, former India coach, Arjuna and Dronacharya awardee, Syed Nayeemuddin can be introduced in many ways.

Now there's a new facet to his identity - coach of the Bangladesh football team.

After India's woeful performance at the AFC Asian Cup qualifiers last year that resulted in a show down between the coach and captain Baichung Bhutia, the AIFF sacked the entire coaching staff of the Indian team including Nayeem who was head coach at the time.

Now in his second month as coach of Bangladesh, Nayeemuddin is hoping to take the Bangla boys to an altogether new high, though he concedes there are the usual obstacles in the way.

"You need time, you need money. That is a big problem in Bangladesh, they don't have any sponsors. Boys are very good, officials are fine, but they need sponsors at every step," said Nayeemuddin.

The man who captained India to a bronze in the 1970 Bangkok Asiad hung up his boots in 2000 and took over as India coach in 2005.

Success followed immediately with India winning the SAFF Cup that year, ironically their last international success.

Interestingly India beat Bangladesh in that final. He might be on the other side now, but it's the same drill here as well.

"He is giving us power training. We did not have any practice matches under him. Since it's raining in our country, fields are wet. He is making us mentally strong so that we can play well," said Kazi Najrul Islam, Captain, Bangladesh Football Team.

Play well, they must, considering that the new coach is setting very high goals for a team, ranked 10 places below India at 172 in the FIFA rankings.

He wants to see his team at least top in Asia. "But they need to have plenty of money, then they can prepare well. That is the main worry, I believe," the coach said.



Topics : Football
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