Ashley Westwood calls win a total team effort

Bengaluru Football Club’s (BFC) English coach Ashley Westwood appreciated the club’s fans chants of “When the Blues go marching…” during home matches on Tuesday after the club marched all the way to the league title in its debut season. The players even did a lap of honour carrying a banner that thanked the fans after the final home match. “They have been intelligent…very supportive and really passionate about the club,” Mr. Westwood said.

Sunil Chettri, who arrived in Bangalore on Tuesday afternoon along with the rest of the team, said: “There are two reasons behind BFC’s success — our coach Ashley Westwood, and our fans. These are the best fans in the world. Right from day one, they have supported us. This is an amazing feeling.”

BFC — with its style of play and the English league-like spectator-friendly hospitality — had lured in the crowd. And nearly 500 fans followed the team even on their away matches.

The whole exercise has finally paid off. To capture the title in the debut season is nothing short of “historic” and achieving the coveted feat away from home and against a formidable side like Dempo SC — with a match in hand — is indeed spectacular.

All this, thanks to the “professionalism” that the club and its owners — Jindal Steel Works — adopted.

The first team to be pitchforked into this edition of the Airtel I League through bidding, the club hit the high strings, with purpose and poise.

Neither can the role of the support staff be discounted. Pradyum Reddy, the assistant coach who filled in for Mr. Westwood, who was serving a one-match ban, against Dempo provided the strength that the team looked to.

The ‘Blue brigade’ richly deserves all the accolades and applause that comes its way.

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