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    Thats how he could get the best out of the players

    Even during matches he wasnt someone who would take pressure, that reflected on the players," he added.Kolkata: Former India skipper Bhaichung Bhutia considers himself fortunate to have played under the tutelage of P K Banerjee, who died on Friday, and recalled how the iconic footballer-turned-coach had a huge role to play in one of his most memorable performances for East Bengal.He did not make any statement unnecessarily against anyone. He was always happy, smiling, full of fun.Cool as cucumber"Pradip da was such a cool and composed man and it reflected in the match. His family used to prepare wonderful meals.The Federation Cup win made Bhutia an icon for East Bengal fans after he scored the first hat-trick of the Derby. It was definitely one of the biggest matches of my life," the former India striker added of Banerjee, who won 54 trophies as coach of club and country, the most for an Indian.

    Thats how he could get the best out of the players."There was a lot of hype surrounding the match and Amal da made some unwanted statements but Pradip da did not let the pressure come into his players," Bhutia recalled while talking to PTI.". He did not come under pressure like Amal da," he said. Not only on the playing ground, he used to call us or we went to his house and dine at his place.. Pradip da was one of the legendary footballer cum legendary coach."Definitely its a very, very big loss for Indian football. I had one of the most memorable match under his coaching for East Bengal."It was so much fun to be around him, to listen to his stories. That was the greatest quality in him.It helped Banerjee prove that his celebrated "vocal tonic" was more effective than Duttas imported "diamond formation", which was popular in Europe in the 50s.More of a friendOff the field too, Banerjee would interact with his players and take the team for meals at his house to strike a chord with them.Bhutia endured racist taunts from Mohun Bagan coach Amal Dutta, ahead of the derby match, but Banerjee "soaked up all the pressure and ensured that the boys remain unaffected. I was very fortunate to play under him.Great mentor"He was not just a great player and coach, for me he was also a great human being."He was definitely like a father figure to me.Banerjee had earlier coached East Bengal to a historic five back-to-back Calcutta Football League titles from 1971-75."Bhutia struck a famous hat-trick to script an epic 4-1 win for East Bengal in the 1997 Federation Cup semifinals in front of a record turn out of 1 lakh 20 thousand which remains the stuff of footballing folklore. But we remained unaffected and it showed in our win," he said.."Amal da was clearly under pressure and made some unnecessary statements."Pradip da never spring pressure gauge came under pressure. He was such a very happy man
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    lunedì, 28 set 2020 Ore. 05.18
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