News Live Scores
Santosh Trophy

Santosh Trophy 2019: Services coach Parshuram Salwadi - Retaining the title is tougher

10:13 GMT+3 25/04/2019
Services Santosh Trophy 2019
The Goan has spelled out the unfamiliar challenges of leading Services in the Santosh Trophy

The Santosh trophy might not carry the prestige it had a decade or so ago. But winning the same with Services poses a unique set of challenges, as the team's head coach Parshuram Salwadi would explain after his side defeated Punjab 1-0 to lift the 2018-19 Santosh Trophy.

"The Services team comprises of players from the Army, Navy and Air Force. The Army, Navy and Air Force teams all practice on a regular basis and they all play in their local tournaments or state leagues wherever they are based. We get an opportunity to come together only for the Santosh Trophy and National Games. It is a tougher job to combine and build a team in such scenarios as players do not practice with each other throughout the year," he told Goal.

The former Army XI goalkeeper added, "It is the panel who picks the team which is handed over to me. Given the resources, we have to shape them. If I was a coach of a state team, I would know which player would exactly suit my philosophy."

Speaking on their opponents in the recently concluded Santosh Trophy final, Salwadi felt that Punjab's main strength was their home support.

"Punjab's strength was their home crowd. The way they came back in the game against Goa, it was very evident. They had the attitude to win but when they played against Services, I made sure it was a different game," he stated.

The Goan was part of the Services coaching staff as a goalkeeping coach the last time they won the Santosh Trophy in the 2015-16 season.

Salwadi, who stepped in the Services team through the Bombay Engineering Group (BEG) of the Indian Army based in Pune, has 18 years of experience and wants to coach his home state in the future.

"Winning a title is tough but retaining it is even tougher," he said. "Now we (Services) won our sixth (Santosh Trophy) title and Goa have won five. If Services gives me another opportunity, I will try to make it one better. I need to prove a lot to GFA (Goa Football Association) to get an opportunity to coach the Goan team because there are a lot of good and experienced coaches in Goa."

The Fatorda-based coach went on to laud the decisions of Goa coach Samir Naik among others to take up coaching professionally.

"Everybody knows that Samir Naik was an excellent player. It is good that former players like him, Clifford Miranda, Mahesh (Gawli) and Climax (Lawrence) have becomes coaches because they know the game well. As former players they got that extra rappport and they also command that respect from the players.

Meanwhile, commenting on Goa's performance in the Santosh Trophy, Salwadi is of the opinion that the team could have done better with more young talent.

"It was a balance of youth and experience. Joachim (Abranches) and Tyson (Caido) made it to the first team but I feel there should have been more youngsters than the experienced players. When I watch the Goa Pro League, I think there are a lot of young players who are very hungry to achieve something," he mentioned.