The Captain of Team Melli U-23 , known as the Omid Team , has spoken to ISNA about the aspirations and the prospects of the team.
Behnam Barazay , the current Rah Ahan player and the Captain of the U23 team , believes in strong preparation games ” unless we play against quality teams for our friendly games to get the big experience , I am afraid we will not be able to qualify for the Olympic Games.”
The young striker , is also confident that the Croat coach Zlatko Kranjcar is the best candidate for the Omid team ” He has coached at different levels, his record is quite good , he coached in Iran and his approach is professional. I believe he is the perfect coach for Omid Team.”
“Although many players prefer to work with Iranian coaches, and I am one of those players , as communication is easier , however a coach in the class of Kranjcar can make a big difference.” Barazay added.
Regarding the recent failures specifically in the Asian Games in Incheon, Barazay said ” The players were under tremendous stress after the Asian Games. In the Qatar camp , quite a lot of work was done on the psychological aspect but fear of losing still causes a lot of stress.”
About his own future career and whether he will follow his teammates Alireza Jahanbaksh and Sardar Azamoun in to Europe, Barazay Did not want to think about that for the time being although he received an offer from an Arab team. ” All my concentration right now is on the form of my team Rah Ahan. I have not succeeded in gaining the full confidence of Hamid Estili yet. My goal is to do that. I need to get it right here in Iran before thinking about abroad and becoming a legionnaires”
The situation with the appointment of Kranjcar took another weird twist when it was decided that a committee within the football federation will have to examine the Croat coach resume and give its seal of approval before the coach can be appointed. This development cam up aright after Ali Kaffashian and Habib Kashani confirmed the appointment of the ex-Sepahan Esfahan coach as the head coach of the Omid Team. Many observers are suspecting some interference by the Ministry of Sport who always claims that they have no role in appointing coaches for National Team , but in reality they exert pressure on the FFIRI and Kaffashian to pass their own candidates.