Football in India has continued to improve over the years. Apart from former players, a growing number of people have taken interest in coaching at the highest level in India. Lots of coaches have been involved in one way or the other in the growth of the game in India. India has produced some really good coaches. This article takes a look at some of the famous Indian football coaches of all-time.
1. Khalid Ahmed Jalil
Khalid is a Kuwaiti-born former Indian national team player who also represented the Blue Tigers between 1998-2001. Jalil played just eleven games. He would later go into coaching. His first managerial job was with Mumbai FC, before moving to Aizawl FC, where he won I-league for the 2016-2017 season. Khalid was awarded the coach of the year for 2020-2021 by the Football Players Association of India. Khalid Jalil broke a record by becoming the first Indian coach to reach the ISL playoffs.
2. Armando Colaco
The 67-year-old manager is one of the most successful coaches in the history of the I-league. He managed some of the top Indian football clubs like Churchill Brothers and Dempo FC. At Dempo, he had an impressive wins record winning 119 out of 217 games played between 2000-2003. After Armando’s successful stint with the aforementioned clubs, he went on to coach the Indian national team for a few months in 2011. In 2008, Colaco became the first I-League manager to lead an Indian team to the semi-finals of the AFC Cup .
3. Syed Nayeemuddin
Syed is a former captain, and coach of the Indian national team, the Blue Tigers. Nayeemuddin coached India between 1997-1998 and 2005-2006. He achieved success with the national team winning the South Asian Football Federation Cup. The 76-year-old has also managed different Indian club sides like Brothers Union, Mahindra United, and East Bengal. Syed Nayeemuddin is one other top Indian football players of all-time, and also one of the best Indian football coaches ever.
4. Amal Dutta
The late coach is considered the first professional coach in Indian football. Amal was initially a football player who featured for various teams like Sporting Union and East Bengal. Dutta’s first coaching role was at a local amateur called railways in 1960. Later he took control of the helms at East Bengal where he managed for 3 years from 1963-1965. After coaching Mohun Bagan, he returned to East Bengali in 1976 and stayed there a further 9 years. Amal’s final coaching job was at his former club Bagan. Dutta passed away in 2016 at the age of 86.
5. Santosh Kashyap
Santosh is another former Indian international footballer. He has coached a plethora of clubs over his over 10-year career about 10 clubs. He is the current head coach of Chennaiyin FC B, which he took over in 2019.