Published On: Sat, Aug 6th, 2016

Have to be pragmatic in the first year: Steve Coppell

Mumbai, Steve Coppell, who was recently taken on board as the head coach of ISL franchise Kerala Blasters, said it is difficult to have a vision for the football tournament’s upcoming season but underlined that he needs to be ‘pragmatic’ in his first year.

“Well, it is difficult to have a vision because as such you don’t really know the tools you (are) going to be working with. Because the Indian players, I have not obviously worked with before…we are in the process of selecting international players, so at the moment, it is a game that is being played at my imagination,” Coppell told PTI in an interaction.

Coppell, however, underlines that he needs to be pragmatic in order to get the best out of players in a short of period.

“Very often a coach will tell you, transfer in a squad of players from your imagination to actual Greenfield, sometimes things get lost in translation. Obviously, I would love to be successful this year (and) certainly in the first year I have to be very pragmatic to get the best from the squad of players we are going to select and make them as effective as possible in short piece of time,” he said.

“If we can do that and play attractive, entertaining and attacking football, then it will be massively wonderful season as far as I am concerned,” he adds. 

Football club, Kerala Blasters is one the prominent franchises of the Indian Super League and has cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar as one of the club owners.

Asked what advice he will give to players, he said, “You just want your players to give the role. Although only 11 players can play at any one time the squad is 24-25 players, so to a large expense the most demanding roles to be played are the players who are not playing. They have to be so supportive.”

“…I just hope we get a union of everybody involved in the squad (and) everybody is committed towards a common goal of making the club successful,” said the former English footballer said.

To a poser on if he will seek Sachin’s advise, Coppell says, “I don’t know till we get going. He is obviously got a wealth of experience about being successful and I am sure the focus he brought to (his) cricket, we can pick his brains and try and transfer few of those ideas into the football team.”

“I met Sachin and I can see his concentration and focus in sports and I will be fascinated to talk to him to see how he can help the club and individuals and myself going ahead in the new season,” he added.

PTI 

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