Mumbai: With the game of football growing fast in the country, the Association of Indian Football Coaches (AIFC) was launched here on Wednesday, with the recognition of the All India Football Federation (AIFF), to provide a platform and for the welfare of the coaches.
"We are starting this to help the coaches with the support of AIFF. It's not a union and we will work with AIFF," said one of its directors and AFC A license coach Dinesh Nair at the media conference to announce the launch of the AIFC.
Nair is also the head of the Youth and Grassroots development wing of the ISL outfit, Mumbai City FC.
"It's important for everyone to work together as we want to develop many more coaches. Our aim was to develop 6,500 coaches from the 2014 level of 1,200. Now in the next five years we want to make it 65,000 coaches as football is growing rapidly in India," AIFF's COO Kishor Taid said.
Apart from Nair, the board of directors of the newly floated coaches body comprises former India captain I M Vijayan, former international player Derrick Pereira, Sanjoy Sen and Thangboi Singto. The AIFC is supported by SportingLions Foundation.
Singto, the assistant coach and technical director of Kerala Blasters, said while a lot of progress has been made in developing football coaches in the country, it is also a fact that "we need to do a lot more."
Former international and AIFF's head of coach education, Savio Medeira, described it as a "great initiative" and wished the new body success "for long and healthy association with all Indian coaches."
The aim of AIFC, it was emphasized, was also to work with the AIFF and "assist them in conducting AFC coaching license courses, refresher courses and work for coach education which will help in players' development in various leagues and grassroots tournaments."