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Karim to join on Nov. 18

Karim Bencharifa

Calcutta: Mohun Bagan on Friday named Karim Bencharifa as their coach but the Moroccan is expected to take over the reins only on November 18 after serving a one-month notice at Salgaocar.

Less than a week after Santosh Kashyap was forced to quit following back-to-back losses in I-League and Federation Cup ouster, Mohun Bagan assistant general secretary Srinjoy Bose said they have negotiated with the Moroccan for a fresh innings at the club.

But as Bencharifa would not be available immediately, Mridul Banerjee, an AFC A License holder, was appointed interim coach.

“We are very hopeful that Bencharifa is joining us on November 18. We have reached a negotiation. But at present he is serving notice so we are yet to sign on the dotted lines,” he said during a media interaction at the club tent on Friday.

Though he refused to divulge the most lucrative deal in Indian coaching which is said to be worth Rs 2.4 crore, he said it would be a long term association till season 2014, hence a 19-month contract.

Bencharifa had on Thursday tendered his resignation at Salgaocar ending his contract which was till May 2013.

Both the parties had an exit clause with a one-month notice period.

Mohun Bagan have thus changed coaches eight times since the Moroccan had parted ways after his association with the club from June 2008 to January 2010.

After leaving Mohun Bagan, Bencharifa proved to be a success with Salgaocar, earning them an I-League title and then the Federation Cup triumph last season.

Another Bagan official said: “We have a big fanbase so success is mandatory and if any coach is successful then no one can take away his job.”

He added that there will be no technical committee unlike last season when a three-member committee headed by Chuni Goswami was formed with Satyajit Chatterjee and Pradip Chowdhury being the other two members.

“I don’t think he (Chuni Goswami) did his job properly as the head of the technical committee and he never submitted the list of players that we should recruit for the new season. There will be no technical committee this season, every decision will be taken by Bencharifa,” Dutta said.