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Francisco Bruto da Costa - The Indian coach rubbing shoulders with the likes of Mohamed Salah

06:38 GMT+3 27/12/2021
Mohamed Salah, Francisco Bruto da Costa, Egypt
The AFC pro-licence holding Indian coach is currently a part of Nelo Vingada's staff working with the Egyptian FA....

It is rare to find Indian coaches making a name for themselves these days in Indian football let alone abroad. But Francisco Bruto da Costa is an exception.

In recent years, Khalid Jamil is the only Indian coach to have gained prominence first by winning the I-League title with Aizawl FC in 2017 and then guiding NorthEast United to a third-place finish and a play-offs spot in the Indian Super League (ISL) last season.

Like Jamil, Francisco too is an AFC pro-license holder. The Goa-born coach is currently working as a technical assistant in the Egyptian Football Association (EFA). He is part of Nelo Vingada's staff who joined the Egyptian FA as a technical director in September 2021. The Indian coach had earlier worked as an assistant to Vingada at ISL sides NorthEast United FC and Kerala Blasters and also at the Malaysia national team. 

In Egypt, Bruto da Costa is working closely with all the age group national side as well the senior team. He is also associated with the Egypt Women's national team. He accepted the offer from the Egyptian FA after completing his tenure as an assistant coach at Bangladesh Premier League side Sheikh Russel KC, a job he took in 2019.

"My first session was with the senior national side but I am involved with the national teams of all age groups. I have also been with the women's national team as well," Francisco told Goal.

"I had a contract with Sheikh Russel in Bangladesh. Once the contract got over, I came back to India. After that, I went to Egypt and attended the first training session with the senior national team on September 28. I have come here as Nelo Vingada's staff. 

"I have been with Nelo since working with him at NorthEast United and after that wherever he goes, he asked me to come along. I am very grateful to Nelo for giving me this opportunity. Getting a chance to work with Nelo and Carlos Queiroz is a once in a lifetime opportunity," added the Goan coach.

From working with former Real Madrid and Portugal boss Carlos Queiroz to watching Mohamed Salah play from close quarters, Francisco is currently living the dream in Egypt. The technical assistant was all praises for Salah's work ethic and humble nature despite being the superstar he is.

"I got a chance to work with Salah in my very first assignment. I was with Carlos Queiroz's staff during the international matches in October 2021. Salah was not present for the first match against Liberia but after that when all the other Egyptian players who play abroad joined, Salah came. 

"When I met Salah for the first time, I was surprised. He is like any other player of the Egyptian national team. Very simple, very humble but very serious about his work. Nobody can make out that he is a superstar because of the way he conducts himself. He joined the team just after scoring that amazing goal against Man City. Just a great guy to work with," revealed Francisco.

Former Kerala Blasters coach Nelo Vingada too certified his close confidant's ability as a coach and why he decided to bring his Indian assistant to Egypt.

"Francisco is first of all very young and our team needs someone younger with a different vision and also can be close to the coaches. He has that capacity. He is a qualified coach, he knows his job and can also work in the capacity of a coaching instructor. In Egypt, he is helping and supporting with technical knowledge, from the youth teams to the Olympic side. When he came, he also worked with the senior team," Vingada informed Goal.

Bruta Da Costa was appointed as the coach of East Bengal in July 2021 by the club officials but after Shree Cement came on board as their investor, Francisco was dropped from the coaching roster unceremoniously as Robbie Fowler was appointed as the head coach and Renedy Singh joined his coaching team as the Indian assistant coach. But the rejection certainly did not demoralise the Goan and he is now working with a national side who are currently ranked 45th in the latest released FIFA rankings.