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Luis Figo: Having a player play in Europe will serve as an inspiration for the Indian youngsters

Luis Figo: Having a player play in Europe will serve as an inspiration for the Indian youngsters

John Vaz

The Portuguese believes that India needs to work on the basics if they are to hope for a better future in the world of football…

Luis Figo, who was on a visit to Goa to grace the finale of the Youth Champions League (YCL), stated that the onus was on Indians to decide where they want to see the football in the country reach in the years to come.

Given that India skipper Sunil Chhetri plies his trade at Sporting CP’s B side, Brandon Fernandes having a trial at Reading and Leicester City, Figo was asked as to what was in store for Indian football in the coming years.

“For Indian football it’s always important that you have references of players playing in Europe, because the football in Europe is strong, so they can learn a lot. Also having a player play in Europe will serve as an inspiration for the youngsters,” opined the former Inter Milan winger.

The 39-year old put the ball in the court of the authorities and mentioned that it was to them to decide the future course of action for Indian football depending on what they set out as their goal.

“As regards to the future of Indian football I cannot say because I’m not much informed in this regard. But it all depends on what you guys want for your football and for the country. I think it always depends on what you do in the present, because just thinking about the future and doing nothing; well it’s not going to happen on its own,” said Figo

“I think you’ll have the material, because you have a lot of people in the country, but you have to work now so that you’ll get rewarded in the future. As I said before it all depends on what you want to do and what you want to achieve,” he added.

The Portuguese explained that it was hard work and being focused which helped achieve the goals he set for himself each year.

"I've not been approached to coach India"

“When I started out my dream was to make it into the first team of Sporting, to be a professional player. That was my dream and I worked hard for it, during my 10 years at Sporting.  During that time a lot of things happened, but you have to focus on each year on your personal goals and on the objectives of the team. Like I said before, in Europe the standard of players is very high. At a young age I saw some good players and then I felt that I had to be like them. So I had to work for that,” he said.

Figo was also asked whether he would be interested taking up the role of India’s head coach and help them climb the rankings ladder, to which his reply was to the point and apt.

“I’ve never thought of coaching India, because first of all I don’t have a coaching license. Secondly since my retirement, I’ve not thought of coaching as a goal currently. Third, I’ve not been approached to coach India.”

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