The All India Football Federation (AIFF) on Wednesday denied reports of sacking its U-17 team's head coach Nicolai Adam.
Reports emerged on Tuesday that AIFF has sacked Adam due to the team, which will represent the country in the U-17 World Cup to be hosted by India later this year, finishing last in a 16-nation exposure tournament in Russia.
Indian colts played poorly, finishing at the bottom in a highly disappointing Granatkin Cup campaign.
Adam was reported to have been shown the door with less than nine months to go for the U-17 World Cup.
"All India Football Federation is surprised and denies the news report about the sacking of FIFA U-17 World Cup Team head coach Nicolai Adam," an AIFF statement said.
"The AIFF President Mr. Praful Patel interacted on Tuesday (January 24, 2017) with the coach and the boys who were on their way back to Goa from the Valentin Granatkin Memorial Tournament in St Petersburg, Russia. The President discussed the performance of the team as well as the way forward towards preparing a more competitive team for the U-17 World Cup."
The AIFF statement said the team has been sent on long exposure tours to Germany, Dubai, Spain, South Africa, Norway, Brazil, Russia amongst others, to be prepared for the mega event in October. The U-17 team would resume their practice on February 1, 2017 in Goa.
"The AIFF as the governing body is focussed on the development of the game and unearthing new talents in the country. It is AIFF's utmost priority to ensure a proper roadmap for Indian Football and the welfare of the boys," AIFF added.