I-League 2017: Luis Norton de Matos - 'Indian Arrows are prepared for the physical challenge'

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The coach of the junior Indian national team wants to adopt a style of play which would catch the attention of Stephen Constantine...

Indian Arrows and Luis Norton de Matos will begin their I-League 2017-18 campaign when they take on Chennai City FC at the Bambolim Athletic Stadium in Goa, on Wednesday.

Though the team will be based in Delhi, their first two home matches will be played in Goa due to the unavailability of the stadium in the national capital.

"We are very excited with this opportunity to play in the I-League. If you want to see only results, it will be very difficult for us. If you see the far picture, this programme to continue with the U-17 World Cup players and U-19 players is logical," voiced Arrows head coach de Matos.

"At the end, we are sure that these players will get more competitive experience. This experience will be very crucial for the goals that we have in the future," he added.

The former Benfica ‘B’ coach believes that his players will only gain from the experience of playing in the I-League, which is India’s top division league.

"We would find the difficulties in I-League similar to what we found in the (U-17) World Cup. This team is prepared for the physical challenge in the I-League. Experience is the most important thing that they don't have right now," he continued. 

"This competition (I-League) will give us a lot of problems that we won't have without this competition. Nobody wins or loses before playing. We will try to do our best to get victories."

Luis Norton de Matos India U17

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When quizzed if the style of play will be similar to that deployed by India head coach Stephen Constantine, De Matos insisted that he needs a minimum period of two years to get the team to play in a certain manner.

"Right now, it's completely different to get this experience. We need to build the team, starting with the organization. Sometimes people say it’s defensive but there is a confusion between defensive and organization. Of course, the most important thing in football is to play well offensively. This process requires some experience. Two years for me is the minimum to come up with a style of play," he said.

"I prepare the profile of players. I don't teach football to these players. I teach to play collectively. What we want to build here is to have more intensity in the players before sending them to a different age group. For now, it is important that players in each position get a collective idea of how to play together,” he pointed.

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