Al Shaab tap Eid Baroot to guide AGL return
DUBAI // Eid Baroot reckons “teamwork” will be the key as he leads Al Shaab’s bid for a return to the Arabian Gulf League next season after signing a one-year deal with the relegated club.
Shaab started last season with Marius Sumudica as their coach before replacing him with Zeljko Petrovic, but failed in their bid to survive in the top division, along with Dubai, and eventually finished at the bottom of the league table.
The Sharjah-based club, who had as many as six representatives in the UAE team at the 1990 World Cup including Adnan Al Talyani, have now put their faith in Baroot and the Emirati coach is confident of taking Shaab back to the AGL if he gets the required support from everyone involved.
“Teamwork will be crucial,” Baroot said. “All the lovers of Shaab should know the only way of getting back to the top division is through the co-operation of all members of the board of directors, the technical and administrative staff, the players and the fans.
“The fans will be the most important because they are considered the No 1 player for any team. So the more cohesive our work, the easier it will be for us. A coach and a group of players cannot achieve any success if these conditions are not available.”
Baroot is confident there is no dearth of talent at the club, with five of their players representing the national youth and Olympic teams. He has also welcomed the club’s decision to renew their deal with striker Michael N’dri.
“Michael has been one of the best players in the team and has considerable experience in the professional league,” Baroot said. “So he will play a really important role for us.
“We have all the ingredients in place to reclaim our rightful place among the top 14 clubs in the country, and I will do my best to make it happen. But like I said, we will need everyone to get behind us.
“It will not be an easy journey and we all know that. I have not come here for a picnic, but to work.”
Al Shabab, meanwhile, have identified Brazilian coach Adilson Batista Dias as their primary target to replace Marcos Paqueta.
Paqueta was forced to leave after Shabab failed to reach a final for the first time in seven years and finished their AGL campaign poorly, managing only two points from their last six matches.
Club sources claim Shabab are negotiating with three managers – a Romanian, an Argentine and a Brazilian – to lead their campaign next season and Batista seems to be emerging as the frontrunner.
Batista, who has managed some of Brazil’s top clubs like Corinthians, Sao Paulo, Santos, Atletico Paranaense and Atletico Goianiense, is currently out of a job after ending his relationship with Vasco da Gama.
“The management is keen to hire a coach who is hungry for success and is ready to embark on a new experience in this part of the world,” a club source said, adding that a decision could be made inside a week.
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The National’s Sport web editor, Jonathan Raymond, and reporter John McAuley discuss the major events of 2013/14 surrounding Arabian Gulf League clubs Al Ain, Al Ahli, Al Jazira, Al Wahda and Al Nasr and look ahead to next season in the Arabian Gulf League. Produced by Mohammed Al Neyadi
Published: May 26, 2014 04:00 AM