In conversation with Kali Alaudeen: Indian Football is growing faster since the arrival of ISL

Despite the Durand Cup loss, Chennaiyin FC reserve team Coach Kali Alaudeen believes team has a lot of positives to take home.

Despite the Durand Cup loss, Chennaiyin FC reserve team Coach Kali Alaudeen believes team has a lot of positives to take home.

Chennaiyin FC reserve team coach Kali Alaudeen – Former Mumbai FC, Air India player speaks with footballcounter about the clubs performance in Durand Cup, the change in Indian football of his time and now, his coaching role with Chennaiyin and what future he is aiming for.


Chennaiyin FC couldn’t make it to the semi-finals, what would you say about that? Any positives to take from the tournament

Our full team squad just got only 10 days of practice session. We felt it difficult to combine all players together which affected the co-ordination in the team. Overall it was always going to be difficult against the tough competitors in this tournament.

Even though we lost in this tournament, I still find some promising & positive side of the team. I am happy because our boys are very young players averaging 19 years of age, compared to other teams in this tournament. Durand Cup is one of the oldest tournaments in Asia, I am proud of the team, we played impressive football with young & emerging players against teams from I-League that had many senior players and overseas players in the squad.

We fielded all Indian lineup in the tournament and they have shown that they can compete with such a mighty clubs and giant players at this stage of game. I take this was a good experience for our players in spite of losing the tournament.

What difference do you see between the players of current generation and of your time?

In my tenure as a player, I-League was considered as the highest level tournament. And even though we considered ourselves as professional football players, we found lack of infrastructure, lack of technical staffs or experienced foreign coaches. After ISL emerge, it took Indian Football to next professional level. Now players are finding more professionalism, getting and learning new tactics with foreign coaches.

Overall I feel Indian Football is growing faster since the arrival of ISL. I expect, Indian Football by 2030 to be much better at international level.

You played for various I-League clubs in Mumbai and now shifting to Chennaiyin FC for coaching. Has it been difficult?

Yeah! It’s true. As a player I played for various I-League clubs in Mumbai, but I am very much comfortable as a coach of Chennaiyin FC Reserve Team. The reason is basically I am from Tamil Nadu, I love my city Chennai & also Chennaiyin FC Club. It’s my pleasure to work with Chennaiyin FC team. I have no difficulties & I am always happy & proud to be a part of Chennaiyin FC campaign.

You have been working as a reserve team coach. What is your future plan?

Since retiring from my playing career, I have taken the first step towards my Coaching Career and will be working for the reserve team in Chennaiyin FC. As a coach, my aim is to improve the team’s performances so the first step will be to analyse the cause for the loss of our Durand Cup. I want to rectify the mistakes which happened in this tournament and will take necessary actions to avoid them.

My main ambition and future plan with Chennaiyin FC is to promote the reserve team players to the senior level. And this was my goal and ideal responsibility as a reserve team coach.

My future plan is to work hard and get certificate in “A” License, moreover I want to study, learn and analyse much with Football. Thereby, I can see myself as a best tactician in Coaching. I hope one day, I can coach Indian Football Team by my hard work and 100% commitment towards my work. (Insha’Allah if God wish).

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