ISL 2021: Here are the Reasons for Habas’ resignation as ATK manager

    Habas took command of the newly established ATK Mohun Bagan FC, a merger of ATK and the football unit of Mohun Bagan AC, on March 15, 2020.

    In their first season, ATK Mohun Bagan tied for the first position in the Indian Super League table with Mumbai City but was forced down to second place on head-to-head points and lost the final 2–1. He signed a one-year contract extension with the club on April 3, 2021. Habas resigned as the head coach of ATK Mohun Bagan on December 18, 2021.

    His Playing Career

    Habas had a quiet professional football career, featuring in 48 La Liga games over four seasons, eight of them with Sevilla FC when he joined in 1977 from local amateur CD Pozoblanco after being allocated to Sevilla Atlético.

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    He also played for Real Murcia, Burgos CF, and Atlético Madrid before retiring at the age of 29. Despite scoring 13 goals in 32 appearances for Burgos in 1981–82, the club was relegated to the Segunda División owing to financial issues.

    Situation Before His resignation

    Habas prefers to play as a unit. Throughout the years that he coached ATK, unity has been the cornerstone of his success. He wants his players to give their all on the field, but the team’s division compelled him to resign because players are never sacked, only coaches.

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    Long after the AFC Cup, the squad’s discontent intensified. Mumbai’s 5-1 thrashing sparked the game. In the current edition of the Indian Super League, he has been the first victim of failure. On Saturday, the Spanish coach, who was in charge when the Kolkata club’s previous incarnation, ATK FC, won three titles, was fired.

    As ATK-MB lost the lead twice before being held to a 3-3 draw by Bengaluru FC, Habas looked for answers. The team issued a statement confirming Habas’ resignation before its upcoming match against NorthEast United FC, which looks to be the catalyst.

    Reasons and Views from Fans

    When we investigate perspectives, we find that they are quite jumbled. Some claim he has only been at ATK for half a season, blaming him for being excessively self-centred and leaving the club (Goa) when he was promoted to the top. He did, however, save himself from a sinking ship. He’s also to blame because, during recruitment and pre-season, he should’ve looked into player ego and unity concerns.

    But we can say, Habas was able to keep his dignity. Before he resigned, he was mocked by top Indian players as well. He had every right as a senior coach to preserve his self-esteem and leave a toxic environment, which he did later.

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    Habas has won two ISL titles and is one of the most successful coaches in the league. Last season, the Mariners finished second in the league table under his guidance, just missing out on the title by a single point. In his final game as head coach of ATK Mohun Bagan, against Bengaluru FC on December 16, the Spaniard also became the first coach to reach 100 ISL appearances.

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    Final Thoughts

    The ATK Mohun Bagan management has received the Spanish coach’s resignation letter. This year, though, ATKMB got off to a great start in the tournament. They defeated SC East Bengal in a critical derby match. However, the side has not won a single match since then. After losing two games in a row, they have drawn two matches in a row. The team’s current standing at the league table is not good.

    Manuel Cacallana, ATKMB’s assistant coach, will serve as a temporary coach until a permanent successor is found. For the time being, Cacallana is the new coach of ATK Mohun Bagan.

    Read: Top 5 things to look out for in the ISL 2021-22 season

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