Indian Super League (ISL) club FC Goa appointed former player Carlos Pena as its manager for the upcoming season, the club confirmed on Saturday.
A left-back in his playing days, Pena was with the Gaurs for two seasons (2018-19 and 2019-20). He made 44 appearances and scored two goals for the club.
"I am delighted to be back at FC Goa as the head coach. It was a very easy decision. And whilst there were offers for me to choose a bigger role in Albacete and in other clubs in Spain, the offer to take charge of FC Goa was too good to pass on," Pena was quoted as saying in a media statement.
“Having served as an assistant coach and head coach of youth teams over the past two seasons, I believe this is the perfect opportunity for me."
“Everyone knows my love for this club and the history that we share. My only focus now is to get FC Goa back to the top. I’m here to work hard and bring more success to the club and I can’t wait to get started,” added Pena.
FC Goa had a disappointing ISL season where it finished ninth with 19 points from 20 matches and had just four wins throughout its campaign.
Pena, who is a UEFA Pro License holder, got into coaching following his retirement at the end of the 2019/20 season.
He began his coaching career with the youth team of Lorca before moving on to UCAM Murcia. He had finished the 2020/21 season as the assistant coach of Lleida Esportiu’s senior team.
FC Goa President Akshay Tandon said, "We are very pleased to welcome Carlos Pena to FC Goa as our head coach. Carlos is a leader and a real student of the game. He has a wealth of knowledge and a great understanding of the club and our philosophy of football."
“He has done an amazing job at Albacete in his first season as head coach, nurturing the youth at the club. We hope that he will continue to do so for us."
“After 2 years with us as a player, during which he became a club icon, we believe this is the perfect time for him to return and are delighted he has done so. We will do our utmost to make sure he and his whole coaching team have the support he needs to be a huge success," added Tandon.