I-League 2017/18: Aizawl FC sack coach Paulo Meneses
I-League champions Aizawl FC have decided to part ways with coach Paulo Jorge Coelho Meneses citing the club's poor performance in the current I-League campaign.
“Aizawl FC, the reigning champions of India have decided to part ways with our Portuguese head coach Paulo Jorge Coelho Meneses after seven consecutive ‘winless matches’ in the ongoing I-League campaign," the club said in an official statement.
"We expressed our appreciation of the hard work and commitment of Paulo Meneses but the match results matter most in professional football. All the best our beloved head coach Paulo Meneses,” the club further stated after te development on Monday night.
Meneses, who was part of the coaching staff of Spain's national football team under former boss Vicente del Bosque, took his first major coaching role in July last year at Aizawl, but did not even last an entire year. He had earlier served as part of the coaching staff at Lanexang United in Laos and Chorrilo FC in Panama.
Under the 39-year-old tactician, Aizawl FC stood sixth on the I-League table with 17 points from 13 matches, and are without a win in their last seven matches. The last time they won a match was back in January 13, when they beat Chennai City FC 2-0 at home.
Sportskeeda got in touch with Meneses after these developments, at which point, the Spaniard seemed resigned to his fate, saying that the inexperience of the players was one of the chief reasons for the team going on a seven-match winless run.
"They're young players. These players don't have much experience. But the club seems to think that this is my fault," said Meneses.
Meneses' sacking at such a late stage of the season could certainly be a further blow for Aizawl. However, the defending champions are still in the running to retain their title (mathematically), and will be looking to win as many points before the end of the season, as possible.