KARACHI: Pakistan football team’s former assistant coach Nasir Ismail says he has been shocked by the decision of the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) to remove him ahead of the senior team’s tour to Singapore next month.
“I am really shocked by the PFF decision as I was working hard and the head coach Zavisa Milosavljevic was also satisfied with my performance,” Nasir told ‘The News’ in an interview here on Tuesday after keeping silent for a few days.
However, he was quick to add that if his removal could benefit Pakistan football then he would be happy.
The PFF removed Nasir last week, saying that they wanted to give opportunities to other coaches to work with Zavisa and learn a few things.
Sargodha-born Shehzad Anwar replaced Nasir.
“Before Zavisa I also worked for a year with the then coach Tariq Lutfi and he had no complaint against me and so was the Serbian coach as I had a nice understanding with him during the last one year. I was helping him a lot in every field, including making graphics to visualise certain things,” Nasir revealed.
“But I must say that the national team is not a platform for grooming coaches. Coach Zavisa has come not to train coaches but to raise the standard of the national team. The support staff needs to be experienced who could truly support the head coach,” Nasir said.
Nasir said that the PFF had the right to take decisions. “The PFF is also my second home after my own department National Bank. Whenever the PFF needs my services for the team in future I would be ready,” said Nasir, a License A coach.
To a query Nasir said that being the coach of National Bank he was entitled to raise his voice for the bank. “If I have raised voice for my bank during the Premier League the PFF should not take it personally, but deal with the issue professionally,” demanded Nasir.
“I have sent a video clip of our Premier League match against Army and the clip shows that the assistant referee made a blunder by giving a fatal decision against us in the dying moments but I am surprised that the PFF has not yet given its decision,” revealed Nasir.
“It is my right to raise voice against any wrongdoing during the competitions. If the coaches remain silent after any injustice with their teams, how can football standard be improved?
“In the past I have faced suspension several times and at international level too coaches raise their voice and face suspension but it is important to counter any irregularity,” said the coach.
He rejected the idea that coaches would be groomed if allowed to work with the senior team. “I would say that most of the coaches don’t have any team in the Premier League and the PFF League. The only platform available to them is at the youth level or at the regional level, where their top level experience will be of no utility,” Nasir pointed out.
When asked if he had had any argument with the PFF Director Development and Competitions Pervez Saeed Mir over something about the Premier League, Nasir said he had strong relations with Mir and even the PFF secretary and president had been very supportive.