Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra Limited, a renowned football club of the country currently positioned at the sixth spot in the on-going season of Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).
The former national team player and defender-turned-coach Shafiqul Islam Manik is working as the head coach of Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra Limited. He hopes that his team will bounce back stro-ngly in the next round of BPL.
In an exclusive interview with Daily Sun, Manik spoke about his target, confidence level, his team’s BPL performance and more.
Sheikh Russel made a middle of the line team in the on-going BPL. They had strong faith on young players.
“We did not build a team with big names this year. We built our team marking 3-5 spots in comparison with other teams in BPL,” said Manik
“We had an expectation to fight for the championship with these boys and win the championship title.”
“Our team played well in Federation Cup where we won 1 match and lost 2-match. Later the BPL started,” he added.
Manik believes that the break in the schedule have hampered the consistency of their performance in BPL.
He feels that injury is also to blame for the position Sheikh Russel is at in the point table.
“The break after Federation Cup has hampered the momentum of our team. We could not consistently perform in the league. Later we faced injury problems in our team.”
“We took many promising players in our camp in this season. Our promising players could not show their best performance due to injury related issues. We won 3 matches among the 10 matches we have played. In addition, we lost 3 with 4 drawn.”
“Still we have 12 matches left in the season. We will replace some of the local and overseas players. We will bounce back in the next round BPL matches,” he added.
Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra always strive to form a team to win the title. Sk Russel coach pin pointed their difficulties.
“We did not get results in those matches because we could not play our best and most promising players together due to their injury.”
He also mentioned that Russel have problems in striking end. They took two of the best local striker (Sojib from Moham-medan SC Ltd. and Nayon from Rahmat-ganj MFS) but they could not give their best service in the tournament due to injury. Besides, the foreign players’ performance also were not up to the mark.
Nonetheless Manik remained optimistic and narrated instances of recent success involving Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra Limited.
“We were crowned the unbeaten champion of Bangabandhu Cup Football Tournament which took place in Magura.”
“We clinched the title defeating Dhaka’s premier clubs like Abahani and Mohammedan,” he said.
He requested the management that they could have faith on him and the players. He believes that his team will perform in the next round and at the same time his players can manage a good number of points in the upcoming matches.
He admired Bashundhara Group and Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra Limited’s Chairman Sayem Sobhan Anvir for his constant support.
Sk Russel did not manage any win for 7 successive matches last year.
It was an unlucky season for the club. Sk Russel coach Shafiqul Islam took this challenge after his appointment.
“It was very challenge task for me. Since I took it, I am trying my best for the team.”