Calcutta: For Selangor FA’s Ramez Dayoub, East Bengal is more about nostalgia than complaints or feelings of bitterness.
Dayoub’s experience back in mid-2009 certainly wasn’t a pleasant one because, after spending three months or so in the fold, he had to part with East Bengal without featuring in a single game.
Reason: he didn’t get the release order from his then club Safa SC.
Now, being a key member of the Malaysian club, who face East Bengal in their opening AFC Cup tie at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday, Dayoub no more wants to look back at the past.
In fact, he’s open to a return to East Bengal in future if the offer ‘suits’ him, considering this is his last season in Selangor colours.
“I haven’t heard much about East Bengal since 2010. But I do know they have an Australian striker (Andrew Barisic) who’s pretty impressive.
“It will be a tough game this Wednesday, though,” the central defender, also capable of doubling up as a defensive midfielder, said on the sidelines of Selangor’s practice session, at the East Bengal ground, on Sunday.
Dayoub holds no grudges against anyone. He even inquired about Subhas Bhowmick, the-then coach who played a lead role in trying to insert the Lebanese into the East Bengal ranks.
“How’s Subhas? Well, it’s good to know he’s coaching Churchill Brothers,” he quipped.
Dayoub’s present team, however, is a well prepared unit, occupying the second position in the Malaysian league table.
The team feature Malaysian internationals — Mohammed Allawee Ramli and S. Kunanlan — with other foreign recruits in Peter Chrappan (Czech Republic), Michal Kubala (Slovakia) and Francis Forkey Doe (Liberia) provides them a good balance.