New Delhi: In one of season's biggest signings, former Brazilian World Cup winner Roberto Carlos was yesterday oficially appointed marquee manager of the Delhi Dynamos franchise for the second edition of Indian Super League (ISL) football.
Renowned for his powerful and curling free-kicks, the 42-year-old former Real Madrid 'Galactico' won the UEFA Champions League, La Liga, Copa America and was widely regarded as one of the left-back to have played the game.
Roberto Carlos. Pic/ AFP
His watershed moment, though, was winning the FIFA World Cup for his national team at the Yokohama Stadium in Japan in 2002. Besides the 2002 final, Carlos was a member of the Brazilian World Cup squad that reached the final in France 1998, when they were done in by a Zinedine Zidane-inspired France at the State de France in Paris.
Carlos's managerial experience includes stints with Turkish sides Sivasspor and Akhisar Belediyespor. The Delhi Dynamos team, coached by Dutchman Harm Van Veldhoven, had failed to make the semifinals of the eight-team competition last year. They finished fifth, missing the semi-final spots by just a point. Carlos was also part of Fenerbahçe's squad that reached the Champions League quarter-finals in the 2007-2008 season.
In 2010 Carlos joined Brazilian giants Corinthians before playing his last season for the big-spending Dagestan side Anzhi Makhachkla with whom he also had a brief stint as interim manager. His heroics saw him finish runner up for the World Player of The Year Award in 1997. His other individual accolades include runner up in Ballon d'Or (2002), UEFA Defender of The Year (2002,2003).
In August 2012, Carlos announced his retirement from football at the age of 39. He last managed Turkish top-flight club Akhisar following an 18-month spell in charge of local rivals Sivasspor. Carlos said, "Namaste India I am coming to you, into the club, which is mine now. I want to win together. Delhi Dynamos, Jai Hind."
Prashant Agarwal, President Delhi Dynamos, said, "It is a momentous occasion for not just Delhi Dynamos but also the entire fraternity of Indian Super League. Roberto's wide array of skills on the field, including his free kicks, are stuff of legend and loved by football fans across the world. "Roberto's decision to coach a ISL team also signifies the success of the very first edition of this tournament and the potential it holds to be the football nursery of the world."