Jamshedpur: Advocating for international exposure for footballers, former Indian football goalkeeper Brahmanand Shankhwalkar on Sunday said the country has plenty of talents and could do well in international level.

"It is not that we do not have talents. We have good players with technique, physique and speed but we lack style of play and international exposure at home," said Brahmanand, an Arujuna awardee.

The emphasis should be on international exposure at home than sending the team abroad more, he said elaborating that we should invite foreign teams to play at home more than sending our footballers abroad.

The matches against the foreign teams should be played in every state particularly in football crazy states like Kerala, Goa and West Bengal to promote and encourage football, Brahmanand added.

He is the assistant coach of Goa's Sesa Football Academy that participated in the AIFF 2nd Division I-League qualifying round matches here.

Brahmanand strongly advocated for a 2nd Division I-league rather than for qualifying round for elevation for main I-league.

Regretting that the number of tournaments in some of the states like Kerala has come down, Brahmanand, whose international career lasted for about a decade in the 1980s, said attempts should be made to organise more tournaments in states as well as home and away leagues to promote football.

Brahmanand said instead of the top players, the second rank and upcoming footballers should be preferred in the local tournaments and leagues organised at state level.

Brahmanand said the idea to start "local leagues for locals" was to create more strikers.

Asked if India lacks a qualified coach, Brahmanand said it was ironical that when the Indian brains were sought-after in all sectors, the meritorious football coaches were not being trusted.

(Agencies)