The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Coach’s emotions in check

Calcutta, July 26: Victory generally evokes several emotions, but none as far as Subhas Bhowmick is concerned. “I’m not a man of emotions. I believe in working hard,” said the East Bengal coach from Jakarta after Saturday’s memorable win in the ASEAN Club Championship final.

“We had a mission to accomplish and it’s been achieved,” Bhowmick told The Telegraph. He added he isn’t planning a grand celebration right now. “For now, today and tomorrow, I just intend to sleep.”

Bhowmick thanked his support staff and refused to pick individuals for credit. “The performance over the past fortnight has been a team effort. No individual can take extra credit. Not just the players here, the back-up support given to us, the club, sponsors Kingfisher, all have contributed to this success.”

Captain Suley Musah said it was a big win, simply because it came on foreign soil. “It was a very important win because it came outside India. This is not just a big win for East Bengal, but equally big for India,” said the Ghanaian.

“We have proved good football can be played in India too. We have also proved we can beat famous teams. We knew BEC Tero Sasana could be beaten. We would have beaten them in the first match had the referee not played spoilsport. I am happy that we have been able to make a mark in Asia.

“Everybody in the team had worked hard for this very match. We were waiting for today to come. The players were confident that they would win the tournament once they make the final,” said Musah.

“The players told me they would win. They have kept their word. I thank them all. We firmly believed we could win this. That’s why we fielded more attacking players in today’s match. They were a good side, but we were clearly superior.”

Musah said it was a shot in the arm for East Bengal who will be playing in the AFC Champions League later this year. “Though that tournament is still some time away, today’s victory will certainly be a morale-booster.”

Musah noted that East Bengal should do well away from home. “When we play abroad, we are unknown quantities. Over here, nobody knows who Bhaichung Bhutia is, or who Musah or Douglas is. That makes it easier for us than in local matches.”

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