Churchill Brothers have roped in Durand Cup winning coach Fernando Santhiago Verela for the up coming I-league season .The former Gokulam Kerala FC head coach will be replacing Portuguese gaffer Mateus Costa.
The Red Machines began their I-league season with some issues last year as their then coach Edward Ansah couldn’t get approval of his licences from the Asian Football Confideration.
Just before the I-league season began, they appointed Portuguese coach Bernardo Tavares, who started with three consecutive wins, including a 4-2 victory against champions Mohun Bagan in Kolkata,but since then lost their way. In 15 games, Churchill was at the 8th position with 20 points and after the 2-1 loss against Gokulam Kerala at home, Tavares was sacked and replaced by Mateus Costa.
Costa, who was with Sporting clube de Goa, joined the team when they had only five games left. However the league was called off and Mohun Bagan were crowned as the champions later on, which forced them to settle at 8th position.
The Spanish coach with Argentine routes, had two successful stints with the Malabarians. They won the Kerala Premier League in 2017 and the Prestigious silverware of Durand Cup in 2019 under Verela and were impressive at the Sheikh Kamal International Tournament at Bangladesh. Gokulam Kerala finished 6th in 15 matches with 22 points under Santiago.
With East Bengal likely to play ISL in the upcoming season, Churchill Brothers will be one of the favorites to win I League. Experienced manager like Santiago Varela will definitely boost their chances.