Ashley Westwood Quits Bengaluru FC On a High
Ashley Westwood had three fantastic seasons with Bengaluru FC. The former Aston Villa footballer guided Bengaluru to two I-League crowns
Ashley Westwood quits as Bengaluru FC coach
Westwood's decision to quit was taken by "mutual consent"
Westwood guided Bengaluru FC to two I-League crowns
Ashley Westwood has left a big hole in the Bengaluru FC camp. The former Aston Villa footballer has ended his coaching stint with India's best football team after three fruitful seasons.
Ashley Westwood's exit comes as a surprise. In a sport where coaches are sacked due to non-performance - a la Louis Van Gaal - Westwood suddenly ending his tenure by "mutual consent" raises eyebrows.
Bengaluru FC, who have won two I-League crowns and the Federation Cup under Westwood, announced the Englishman's exit through an email. It comes at a time when the club had made the quarterfinals of the AFC Cup.
Westwood has left on a high and is quite proud about it. Once in the running for the job of India's national coach - Stephen Constantine got the job for a second time - Westwood was voted top coach more than once.
"I came to the country (in 2013) with a blank canvas, tasked with helping to build a club from scratch, improve Indian football and to try to produce some players to go on to represent the country.
"I feel with 3 major trophies, multiple 'Coach of the Year' awards and developing as many as 10 players to go on to represent India across different ages, I have achieved all of my objectives," Ashely Westwood said in a statement.
What prompted Westwood to leave is not clear.
"It's been an extremely difficult time for the management of the club to part ways with Ashley Westwood. The decision hasn't been the easiest to take," said Parth Jindal, CEO of Bengaluru FC.
Westwood's exit certainly comes as a big blow for Bengaluru FC. The club's success and professional approach under Westwood had put Indian football on the Asian map.