India Extends Head Coach Igor Stimac’s Contract Until 2026 for FIFA World Cup Dreams

India extends Igor Stimac's contract as head coach until 2026, with hopes of FIFA World Cup qualification.

The All India Football Federation (AIFF) has extended the contract of Igor Stimac, the head coach of India’s men’s national football team, until 2026. This decision was announced during a virtual interaction on Thursday by Shaji Prabhakaran, the General Secretary of the AIFF. Additionally, if the Indian team qualifies for the third round of the FIFA World Cup qualifiers, Stimac’s contract will be automatically extended by another two years.

Igor Stimac, a former member of Croatia’s national team that finished third at the 1998 FIFA World Cup, took charge of the Indian national team in 2019. Under his leadership, the team has won four major titles, including two SAFF Championships. Despite some recent successes, Stimac expressed his desire to take the Indian team to the FIFA World Cup, a dream he is determined to achieve.

Stimac has been advocating for better preparation and support for the national team, emphasizing the need for players to compete at their full strength in international tournaments. He believes that with the right support, India can aim for a spot in the FIFA World Cup.

The AIFF’s decision to extend Stimac’s contract reflects their confidence in his work and commitment to Indian football. Despite facing challenges and disagreements with various stakeholders, Stimac remains focused on realizing his vision for Indian football.

Under Stimac’s leadership, the Indian men’s team has achieved significant milestones, including consecutive qualifications for the AFC Asian Cup. As they look ahead to the FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers, Stimac is determined to overcome any challenges that may arise during the campaign.

This contract extension reaffirms the AIFF’s belief in Stimac’s abilities and their commitment to India’s footballing future.

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