Carlton said he would visit his wife, kids in Mysore, then leave for Kerala: Godfrey Pereira
Pereira, 50, who lives in Santacruz and currently coaches the Air India football team, told mid-day
Former India football vice-captain Godfrey Pereira could not believe his eyes when he was woken up on Monday morning to a Whatsapp message titled 'shocking news.' The group comprising ex-players from the acclaimed Tata Football Academy had just informed its members that his former India teammate and captain, Carlton Chapman, 49, had passed away in a Bangalore hospital after suffering a heart attack.
"I had spoken to Carlton just two days ago. He told me that he was going to join I-League side, Gokulam Kerala FC, soon. He said his wife and children are in Mysore, so he would visit them and then leave for Kerala. I recommended two young Mumbai players to him and he assured me he'd select them. I'm shocked to learn of the death. He had no health issues whatsoever," Pereira, 50, who lives in Santacruz and currently coaches the Air India football team, told mid-day.
Chapman played in central midfield while Pereira alternated between the left and right half positions for India in the mid-1990s. "He was my midfield partner. He read the game well. His passes were immaculate. On the ground, he was a very serious figure, always motivating the bunch with his pep talks, but off the field, he was a funny character. He had an infectious smile and it cutely exposed his buck teeth," added Pereira, who gave Chapman a nickname based on his unique facial feature. "I used to call him Tinnu Anand based on the famous Bollywood actor, who also has buck teeth. Carlton hated me for it," says Godfrey, who was not just close to Chapman on the field given their playing positions but also off it.
"We had a Catholic group, comprising Bruno Coutinho, Roy Barretto, Carlton and myself. Whenever the India camp was held in Bangalore, Carlton would take us to his house in Austin Town which was an hour's drive away. We would take a state transport bus on Saturday, stay the night at his place, hear mass at 10am the next day at St Patrick's Church, have lunch and return to the camp. I cannot believe Tinnu's no more," said Pereira.
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