August 5, 2008, 02:32 PM
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BFF anounce national team coach
The national team management committee (NTMC) of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) has confirmed Shafiqul Islam Manik as the new national football team coach yesterday.
BFF's national team management committee led by Badal Roy took the decision in its meeting at the BFF Bhaban.
"We proposed Manik's name to the federation and they will now finalise everything. Initially he will get a six-month term and then everything will depend on his performance," said Roy after the meeting.
"We will also form a selection panel soon," he added.
The contract of Manik, the former Muktijoddha and Mohammedan coach, will come to effect from this month so that he can select players by watching the performance in the Citycell Federation Cup.
The post was vacant after another local coach Abu Yousuf had expressed his unwillingness to continue as the national coach after the debacle in the SAFF Championship in Sri Lanka.
Manik will prepare the team for the Mardeka Cup, the oldest football tournament in Asia held annually in Kuala Lumpur since 1957, in October and an invitational tournament in neighbouring Indonesia.
It was like a dream came true for Manik under whom Mohammedan Sporting Club finished runners-up in the inaugural B. League and emerged champions in the 2005 Nitol-Tata National Football League. He also had a long stint with Muktijoddha Sangsad Krira Chakra and guided the club to the premier league twice, the national league, the federation cup twice and the 1998 McDowell Cup in Kolkata.
"I dreamt of this day for a long time. It was my ultimate goal to become coach of the national team since I started my coaching career in 1995 and my dream has finally come true.
"I think it is the outcome of my successful stint as a coach in the club level," said an excited Manik, who also coached the national under-14 team in 2002 and Under-23 side in 2003.
The former national defender said that his main target would be to prolong his stint with the BFF although it would not be an easy task for him considering the history of the previous coaches.
"It's an opportunity for me to prove a point as a coach. I can only prolong my career as well as getting an extension through my performance.
"I think the working atmosphere in the federation is now much, much better than any other time," said a hopeful Manik, who was also not ready to focus on previous bitter memories with the other coaches.
"But the main thing is that you have to give someone enough time to prepare a team. And everybody has to come forward to bring back those old days of the game in the country. One can't do anything alone," he said.
BFF's ultimate goal is to bring a foreign technical director and Manik was ready to work under him if he got the chance.
"There is a lot of scope for us to learn many things about modern football. So it would be a great pleasure for me to work under someone knowledgeable at this post. Actually I want to work for the game in the country in any capacity," Manik added.
Badal said that they need people like Manik around them to improve the game in the country.
"The technical director is a totally different thing. We need more expertise in different levels to improve the game," he said.
Who thinks he is a good apointment? Personally, he looks decent but we'' have to wait and see
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