Agencies /New Delhi
Delhi Dynamos Football Club – the only club representing Northern India in the Hero Indian Super League introduced their new Head Coach, Miguel Angel Portugal, at a gala ceremony in New Delhi yesterday.
The ex-Real Madrid midfielder assumes responsibility for managing the club from Italian Legend Gianluca Zambrotta under whom Delhi Dynamos FC managed to make it to the semi-final last season.
The news follows a groundbreaking technical partnership that was signed last month with Doha-based Aspire Academy, which will see the world-renowned academy share its football knowhow and management expertise (including coaching, training, scouting and sports science) with the Delhi-based club in their pursuit of success on the pitch. In an early sign of the impact and benefit created by this partnership, Aspire Academy played a crucial role in the search for Portugal. Miguel embarked on his coaching career in 1996 with Spanish third division side, Arandina. Though with the club for a relatively short period of time, his coaching abilities were widely noticed and the very next year he was appointed to manage the Real Madrid C team before subsequently assuming responsibility for the Real Madrid B team.
Under his leadership, both the Real Madrid B & C teams managed top three finishes in their respective divisions – a long-standing goal for the club. He also worked with Racing Santander, and also served as a technical director of the Real Madrid senior team. Prior to joining Delhi Dynamos Football Club, Portugal was coach of the Algerian premier league club CS Constantinois.
Speaking at his first ever media-session in India, Portugal said, “I am looking forward to joining the ISL in India. Being involved with Delhi Dynamos FC is a great opportunity to be a part of the growing football revolution that is taking shape in the country. When I was in Algeria, the ISL was always a point of discussion. During meetings with my team, I saw a few of the Delhi Dynamos FC games on video and I was impressed with the players’ attacking football. The club truly plays like a lion and it wasn’t a difficult decision for me to sign up to play my part in shaping the club’s future success.”
The Spanish coach, 61, has played for many renowned clubs in Spain, including Real Madrid, Valladoid and Rayo Vallecano to name but a few. His illustrious playing career spanned a little over a decade and a half. Portugal was also a part of the Real Madrid team that won the double in 1979 and has been an integral part of the club’s ecosystem since then. Portugal was also a part of the Spanish U-23 and amateur national teams in 1979.
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