The start of the season all pundits were predicting Dempo Sports Club to retain the title or East Bengal to bring I-League trophy first time to Bengal. Big spenders like Prayag United and Mohun Bagan were expected to entertain chances of winning the League has given the star studded line up they had. But no one was given Churchill Brothers a chance to win I-League. They were written off to even find a place in top four in the League table.
Struggling Churchill Brothers Needed The Savior
After losing almost core of the team to other clubs Churchill Brothers were counted as a middle table team. Churchill Alemao after losing few key players turned to Subhash Bhowmick. The club less charismatic Bengali coach was appointed as Technical Director of the club and he was given services of Mariano Dias as the club head coach. This was somewhat a gamble as Bhowmik, despite having an excellent track record as coach, had won very little in past few years.
Staying away from managing football for some time in Subhash Bhowmick was handed reign of struggling Churchill Brothers. From a team which lacked vision after their stars turned their back at the club, to become a champion with unknown talent has been a fairy tale story and the author of this story is none other than Bhowmick.
This is not the first time the Bengal magician has turned the tables around, the shrewd coach manager had scripted similar sort of story with the East Bengal in 2002. The Red and Gold were struggling to in the bottom half of the table in 2001. Subhash Bhowmick took over the struggling club and not only made them win the League in the same year but followed it up by doing something which have never been done by any other club in India, retaining the title. His passion and hunger for success helped him to win a title outside India when East Bengal became first Indian club to win ASEAN club championship in 2003.
Subhash Bhowmick who took charge of the Churchill Brothers at the back end of the last season was inspiring figure along with the head coach of the club Mariano Dias to secure third place in the league standing.
Building The Champion Team
Start of the 2012-13 season where no one gave any chance to Churchill brother to win the title, Subhash Bhowmick was busy in finding players who would do fit his team well. With a limited amount of money he was able to retain few key players like Beto , Steven Dias, Henry Antchoute and Dharmaraj Ravanan. Apart from retaining them Bhowmick also grabbed few eyeballs at the start of the season when he roped in Lebanese International due of Akram Mograbhi and Bilal Najjarin. His surprise signing has been Sandeep Nandy and Tomba Singh. The veterans who had passed their prime were brought in by Bhowmick and both of the team performed exceptionally well for the club.
Subhash Bhowmick introduced attacking brand of football in the Churchill Brothers setup and their free flowing brand of football was a treat to watch. In first match of the season they lost to arch rivals Dempo sports club despite being the better side of the pitch. Subhash Bhowmick, after that match, had predicted that this team has in it which needed to win the title.
Bhowmick’s Churchill Brothers started the first half of the season with bang, staying at the top of the table most of the times. Their goal scoring ability made them feared team in the country. Subhash Bhowmick brought in confidence to unheralded players like Beenesh Balan, Satish, Ashley Fernandes who showed lot of maturity throughout the season. The second half of the league could have turned nightmare for the club. Infulencial centre back Bilal Najjarin who was rock solid at the back, was lured by UAE club Fujairah FC. And Akram Mograbhi was released by the club since he was home sick after his International team mate Bilal Najjarin left the club.
Management skills and talent identifying ability of Subhash Bhowmick come to the rescue of the club at this juncture. First he brought in Senegalese Lamine Tamba as a replacement for the Bilal Najjarin and followed it up by bringing one more big name in form of Afghanistan International superstar Balal Arezou on loan.
Subhash Bhowmick did not stop there and he sent a strong message to his rivals by signing Indian International Sunil chetri on loan from Sporting Lisbon.
I-League Always Comes First!
Subhash Bhowmick used his available resources very well through the season. He prioritized competitions and fielded appropriate teams for different tournaments. He fielded two different teams in the Goa Professional League and I-League which helped the team to remain fit throughout the season. He even fielded a second string team for some of the AFC Cup matches. These tactics of the Subhash Bhowmick helped team to remain fit and focused on I-League.
Subhash Bhowmick has helped Churchill Brothers to reclaim their position at the top of the table. He turned few rookies into the stars of the Indian football. Surely the magician won’t stop here his hunger for success and passion for the football will help Churchill brother to win more titles in the years to come. Fans of the Red machines will hope to see Subhash Bhowmick for a longer period of time and helping the team not just win national titles but also the continental title next season.