Former Indian international and now former coach of Shillong based side Royal Wahingdoh, Carlton Chapman, is back in Kolkata, a city he regards as his second home. He returns as coach of local side Bhawanipore FC. The club have given him the arduous task of helping them qualify for the I-League in 2014-15, although they narrowly missed out on qualification last year.
“I chose to come here because this is my second home. I feel really good here and I am looking forward to having a great time,” said an enthusiastic looking Chapman, who in 2001 retired after a second stint at East Bengal. Chapman has told The Times of India that moving to Kolkata has fortified his resolve of helping his team qualify for the I-League, the top tier of Indian football, a feat he slipped up in with Wahingdoh.
“I am quite used to working under pressure so that is not a problem for me. I am confident that I will get a strong squad and we will do our best,” enunciated the former TATA Football Academy product unflinched by the weight of expectation on him.
Being the coach of Bhawanipore FC also has its perks and the former JCT player, Chapman, is delighted as the prospect of working with Brazilian hotshot, Jose Ramirez Barreto, on whom he opined, “Barreto is a great player and a very humble person. There are many players who, after a long stint at the highest level, would not even think of playing in the lower division. But Barreto has shown great attitude and looks very motivated. He is a role model for all young players. It is a privilege to be working with him.”
Chapman is also expeditiously following an Asian Football Confederation (AFC) ‘A’ license, which he hopes to acquire very soon.
He seems unperturbed by the All India Football Federation (AIFF) moratorium in deciding the number of foreigners who will be eligible to play in the I-League, with rumours indicating the number will decline.
"If fewer foreigners are allowed, I have no problem with that. It will mean more opportunities for the Indian players,” quipped Chapman, who also swiped away any suggestion that the match between Bhawanipore and East Bengal will be anything but a casual affair, when those two sides meet in the Calcutta Football League(CFL).