Our Next Objective
By Stephen Constantine, May 20 2016 08:48AM
Well as expected our efforts to make the final group stages of the AFC CUP are still alive, as we were drawn to face Laos in the June play offs with the first game scheduled to be played in Laos on the 2nd of June. The return leg in India will be played on the 7th of June. As I am always saying there are no easy games for India, and we will have to be very disciplined and ready for two tough games against Laos whose play under Steve Darby has greatly improved. My objective coming into my second stint in India was simple; get India into the final group stages, win the SAFF Championship, and overhaul an aging squad. Although we have had a great many problems too many for me to list here we have in short accomplished almost everything we have set out to do. Of course the two games against Laos are going to be very important and hopefully we can get to the final round. One of our main objectives was and will always be to try and climb the FIFA rankings ladder as this then allows us to go directly into groups. Prior to my arrival it had been 8 long years since India had qualified for any of the AFC / WCQ.
Entering my 16th year as a FIFA instructor I found myself going Mongolia to deliver a FIFA Youth Coaching Course which was taking place in the capitol Ulaanbaatar. The home of Genghis Khan and a country full of history it was somewhere I had always wanted to visit.
The course was over the course of five days from the 10-15 of April and the objective was to help Youth Coaches deliver and understand how we coach and train young players.
The weather was good some days and other days it was freezing with snow falling during one of the sessions. There is really only a period of six months where football can be played due to the climatic conditions.
Finally after almost 3 months I am heading for a break and to spend some time with my family in Cyprus and the Greek Easter. It has been a long three months and really am looking forward to some quality time at home.