Santosh Kashyap to be next Bagan coach

Updated: Jun 29, 2012, 20:41 PM IST

Kolkata: Mohun Bagan on Friday announced Santosh Kashyap as their coach in a decision that was termed "brave" by the football club which last won the national league in 2001-02.

Terming it a big and different challenge, the low-profile AFC A Licencse former Air India coach said: "At Air India, avoiding relegation was like winning the I-League. But here we have to achieve the target. I`m, however, confident of the task."

The star-studded squad may be boasting the likes of Odafa Okolie and Tolgay Ozbey but the newly-appointed coach said he would not have any specific game plans for the two stalwarts.

"I will treat them as any other individual. I`ve the best team and the focus would be about team building. I will also focus on developing the talented local youngsters."

Asked whether he would be under great pressure, Kashyap said: "Pressure comes, when you are in fear. But I`m confident about my training and skills. I`m looking forward."

"We are very much confident of winning the I-League. But the target is to win every match, and tournament."

Mohun Bagan general secretary Anjan Mitra said appointing Kashyap was a brave decision.

"He is qualified and we thought if Mohun Bagan do not give him the opportunity, who else will... It`s a brave decision but we are confident."

Asked about their decision to part ways with technical director Subrata Bhattacharya and chief coach Prasanta Banerjee, Mitra said: "It`s our development committee`s decision and we don`t want to make it public."

"But at Mohun Bagan, the doors are not at all closed for anybody. Nobody is permanent, there will be replacements," he said, adding that Kashyap was handed a one-season contract.

The club further announced that it was on the lookout for a physical trainer.

Mohun Bagan, who finished fourth in the last I-League, will begin their 2012-13 season with a camp, tentatively in Durgapur from July 15-28, before the squad assembles the next day for the club`s annual day celebrations.

The coaching panel

Chief coach: Santosh Kashyap; assistant coach: Bernard Oparanozie; goalkeeping coach: Hemanta Dora; physio: Jonathan James Corner.