TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Indonesia national team coach Shin Tae-yong met with the chief of Indonesia Football Association PSSI Erick Thohir on Friday, February 2, 2024. It was their first meeting after the South Korean coach led the Garuda Squad in the 2023 Asian Cup.
In the meeting, Shin Tae-yong said there was no discussion on the contract with PSSI. The meeting with Erick, he said, focused on discussing the development of the national football and the preparation of the Garuda Squad for the 2026 World Cup qualification and the U-23 Asian Cup this year.
Shin Tae-yong’s future with the Indonesia national team is under the spotlight following the offer to STY to coach other countries. The situation has given rise to speculation that the 53-year-old coach will leave before the contract expires.
Shin Tae-yong confirmed the offer. But he ensured to lead the National Team under the agreed contract. He also asserted that there was nothing to discuss about the contract as it was clear that he would coach the Indonesia national team until June 2024. After that, he and PSSI would then negotiate for a possible working contract extension.
“Right now my contract is until June, we’ll discuss a contract extension. So, even though I can pay the fine [if I leave before the contract expires], I will not leave Indonesia,” he said in an interview with Tempo in Senopati, South Jakarta on Friday, Feb. 2, 2024.
In his meeting with Erick Thohir, Shin Tae-yong said they discussed various issues such as the preparation to face Vietnam in March. The Garuda Squad will face The Golden Warriors in two consecutive matches in the second round of qualifying for the 2026 World Cup in the Asian zone during that period.
The Indonesia National Team will play its first match against Vietnam as the host on March 21, 2024. In the second match, the Merah Putih Team will come to Vietnam on March 26. Shin Tae-yong is also determined to bring his team through to the next phase.
“I held a meeting with him (Erick Thohir) talking about the development of players for the future, talked about the match against Vietnam, the schedule of the U-23 national team in April, about the accommodation and support,” he said. “My target right now is to get the national team through to the second round of qualifying for the 2026 World Cup.”
The Indonesian national team previously played their first match in the second round of qualifying for the 2026 World Cup in November 2023. Shin Tae-yong’s men failed to win in the two matches they played after losing 1-5 to Iraq and drawing 1-1 with the Philippines. As a result, they are currently in the bottom position of Group F with one point.