Croatian coach Drago Mamic left Dhaka Abahani Limited after his contract with the club ended last month. The Serbia-born head coach, who was at the Abahani dug-out in their previous premier league match against Mohammedan Sporting Club Limited on November 22 this year, joined Thailand top-flight club Chainat Hornbill Football Club.
Abahani manager Satyajit Das Rupu informed that the club were in talks with Mamic regarding the expansion of the contract. The Sky Blues wanted to keep the coach till the end of the league season but Mamic didn't extend the deal due to personal reason. The club's long-time versatile midfielder Pranatash Kumar said the players did not have any idea with regards to Mamic’s departure, adding that his clothes are still hanging in his room.
When Mamic joined the five-time professional league champion in February this year, he was not a new face at the club. Mamic first joined Abahani on April 17, 2016 during the group stage of the Independence Cup but the 63-year old left the club within 15 days before his contract ended, citing a serious situation.
The Sky Blues now have to face Team BJMC in the Bangladesh Premier League Monday without the regular head coach. Amalesh Sen had guided the club in such situation many times before but the experienced coach passed away last October.
The requirement for the head coach in the top-flight league is at least “B” license. Abahani assistant coach Nazrul Islam has no coaching certificate while goalkeeper coach Atikur Rahaman obtained “C” license this year. Atikur however, has a lot of coaching experience as he was the assistant coach to the national team head coaches, Austrian-Hungarian George Kottan in the early 2000s, Croatian Robert Rubcic in 2010-11 and the Netherlands’ Lodewijk de Kruif last year.
Rupu, who completed “B” license course in 2007, will be eligible to add his name as coach-cum-manager for the time being. The Abahani manager said they are likely to continue with the current coaches for the upcoming fixtures and may appoint a professional foreign coach before the AFC Cup, where they are likely to participate along with newcomer Saif Sporting Club.