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Panel will select city franchise’s Indian coach

Calcutta: The city franchise of the Indian Soccer League (ISL) will form a panel of former players who will select their Indian coach.

Sourav Ganguly, who is one of the co-owners of the franchise, which has tied up with Atletico Madrid, informed that the La Liga leaders will nominate one of their coaches to be with the franchise. At least five of their players are expected to turn out for the franchise.

The club officials will arrive in the city on Monday to hold discussions and finalise the franchise’s name.

“We’ll shortlist around 10 Indian coaches and interview them. A special committee will be formed of former players who will look into it. The committee would shortlist coaches based on their performance. Former players may also be interviewed,” said Sourav on Tuesday.

What if a Armando Colaco wants to coach the franchise? “He can always be there… But he will have to come through the process.”

Once the coaches are shortlisted, they will face the committee who will interview them and then decide on the Indian coach.

“Atletico Madrid will decide on the overseas coach from their panel of coaches. Diego Simeone, their manager, will not be here, but the coaching staff will come over… We will discuss on the infrastructure they are looking at and other related issues,” Sourav said.

Sourav emphasised on the city franchise playing all their home matches at the Salt Lake Stadium when the ISL kicks off in September. “I’m sure the Salt Lake Stadium will be made available. It’s like the KKR playing in the city and the Eden Gardens not being made available.”

Fifa had asked for relaying of the Salt Lake Stadium turf for the 2017 Under-17 World Cup. The removal of the artificial turf is supposed to start from October.

Sourav felt the presence of Jose Mourinho gave Chelsea a slight advantage in their Champions League semi-final against Atletico.

“Chelsea’s biggest asset is Mourinho. He is the super strategist. But Chelsea have injury problems… Hopefully Atletico can make it.”

Moving on to cricket, Sourav said the IPL was wide open. “Every team is on an equal footing… The Kings XI Punjab may have a slight advantage. Mumbai Indians have batting problems… The format is such that anything can happen,” said Sourav.