Chennai City FC to appoint new assistant coach

Andrew Oakley, assistant to former coach Robin Charles Raja, is set to be replaced by M. Muruguvendan, according to the club’s new head coach, V. Soundararajan.

V. Soundararajan, the new coach of Chennai City FC, is keen to sign 24-year old Chennai-based midfielder Charles Raja.   -  S. S. KUMAR

I-League debutant Chennai City FC, after doing away with the services of its coach Robin Charles Raja, has now also released his assistant, Andrew Oakley. The Australian is most likely to be replaced by M. Muruguvendan, according to the club’s new head coach, V. Soundararajan.

“He’s someone I recommended, and is most likely to be signed. He specialises in goalkeeping, so he can double up as the goalkeeping coach,” said the 53-year old on Thursday.

Muruguvendan holds an AFC ‘A’ License, and has worked with the Tamil Nadu senior State team as its goalkeeping coach.

The new coach is also keen to sign 24-year old Chennai-based midfielder Charles Raja, who plays for Southern Railway in the CFA Senior Division League and has represented Tamil Nadu and Indian Railways.

Read: >I-league: Soundararajan up for Chennai City FC challenge

Elaborating on Andrew’s ouster, a reliable source with the team management said that he had made “unprofessional” comments on the appointment of the new coach, indicating that he might not positively collaborate with him. “The management doesn’t want negativity in the team,” the source said.

Also, the source clarified that its former coach Robin Charles Raja and the team management had “mutually agreed” to part ways in person, as opposed to the widespread impression that he was unceremoniously sacked, against his will, over phone.

Robin was “released” by the club on Wednesday, and was replaced by Soundararajan on Thursday.

Soundararajan has an AFC Pro License, which he acquired during in Frankfurt, Germany, and has managed the U-16 and U-19 National sides. He has also managed Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh in the Santosh Trophy.

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