‘Zavisa being put under pressure by PFF’

KARACHI: Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) have started pressurising national coach Zavisa Milosavljevic as the Serbian has been served with a notice, asking him to explain why he is violating rules and interfering in the affairs of the federation, well-placed sources confided to ‘The News’ on Tuesday.

Zavisa had been stopped from talking to the media without prior approval from the PFF the other day.

Sources said that the coach had not done anything wrong but in order to hide their own follies the PFF has been opting for such tactics.

The PFF had rebuked the coach for giving statements to the media about the poor ground conditions in Pakistan a few months back.

Sources claimed that the coach was very disturbed following the development.

Zavisa has been supervising the national Under-23 team at the Model Town Football Academy Ground in Lahore for the international tournament in Sri Lanka early next month. The PFF had claimed after signing Zavisa for two years as national coach on November 5 last year that the Serbian had been given free hand, but the restrictions imposed on him now negate that claim.

The PFF had also used such tactics against the Austrian coach George Kottan during his one-year stay in Pakistan from February 2009 to February 2010.

Kottan too was very critical of the PFF policies and the way football is run in Pakistan.

But the Austrian never bowed before the PFF pressure and kept serving as national team coach quite freely.

The PFF also used to keep under control Bahraini coach Salman Ahmed Sharida who had a fine record as Pakistan coach in 2005-06.

The PFF used to interfere in his affairs which forced Sharida to quit his job soon after the 2006 Doha Asian Games.

In that continental event Pakistan had performed well by giving tough time to such teams as Syria and Japan.

The PFF in May this year had sacked assistant coach and manager Gohar Zaman for negligence just before the Under-22 team tour of Thailand.

And just before the senior team’s recent tour of Singapore the PFF unceremoniously removed assistant coach Nasir Ismail without giving any concrete reason.

Sources said that the PFF did not have any sound and full-time technical director and if Zavisa was also kept under pressure it would disturb the whole development process.

The tactics being used by the PFF against Zavisa show that the foreigner will have to be more cautious in future if he wants to continue his job.

“I think Zavisa should not think that he is fully authorised. If he continues to go against the wishes of the PFF he may lose his job well before the expiry of his contract,” sources said.

The PFF sacked former coach Akhtar Mohiuddin after Pakistan’s exit from the 2008 SAFF Championship even before he had returned to the country from Maldives.

From: The News, 28 Nov 2012