The reigning I-League champions have added more ammunition to the squad by appointing Paul Munster as the new Technical Director for the first Team.
The Irish National arrives in Punjab with a lot of experience both as a Player and Head Coach. During his playing days, the former London City forward scored a staggering 25 goals in 19 games, claiming the Golden Boot in the Canadian Top Division. A League title and Cup double with Linfield FC along with Player of the Month for Slavia Prague in the Czech First Division and several Golden Boot awards around Europe are just some of his accolades.
His performance as a Coach has been very promising and consistent throughout his career. The UEFA Pro License holder dominated the Swedish territory by leading the Orebro SK U-19 & U-21 to Cup Titles which later saw six of his Youth Squad members being promoted to the First Team Squad.
With Minerva Punjab FC set to take part in their maiden AFC Champions League competation Paul’s experience of having competed in the UEFA Champions League with Linfield FC will surely be a boost to the players and the staff.
On signing at the Club’s base in Chandigarh, Paul said, “I have always been going up and achieving more and more each time, even in the coaching courses. Everything has been going well and now it’s a great time for some new experience, especially in India. Joining a club that has been playing in the highest level, are the current champions and the fact that they are going to play in the AFC Champions League, it’s just perfect. I’m moving in the right direction.”
On being asked what brought him here in India at Minerva Punjab FC, the Irishmen quickly replied, “I was looking into Minerva Punjab a few months back, doing research on their scores and social media to see how it is and the first thing that I noticed was Mr. Ranjit Bajaj, the owner is very passionate about the club. He wants the team to be the best at all levels and that is what I liked a lot.” He further added, “For me, it’s a challenge, a new experience but I am coming here to win. As a player, I’m used to winning leagues, cups, individual awards. Coming here as a coach and working at the highest level in India and also playing in the AFC Champions League, it will be a great experience.”
On being asked about his view’s on Minerva Punjab FC’s Youth Development Programme, the 36 year-old said, “It is a really positive aspect as we are expanding. We don’t just have 2-3 teams in the youth, we have 4 and in the future, we should have 5-6 and more, a team for every age group. The players are being trained well, their diet, fitness everything is being taken care of and apart from that, they’re also getting a lot of game time, of course it will improve the players. It is perfect and impressive especially in India, a place you hear so much about in Europe, it is executing everything at such a professional level.”
Paul Munster’s experience makes him a vital addition to the Warriors that will see him leading them in their first assignment abroad, the Irishmen himself sounded confident as he was quoted saying, “We have high expectations. We’re not just here to show our faces and that we’re happy to be here. No. We should always be striving for more. Even in the league, we’re the champions. We’re no longer the underdogs. Everyone would want to beat us. Can we defend the title? That’s the question around right now. With this structure and the way everything is going on, why not? Believe me, I am coming here to win!” on being asked about the team’s maiden assignment on continental stage.
Minerva Punjab FC Owner and Director Ranjit Bajaj was delighted on Paul’s arrival and further said, “We are excited to have Paul on board. He comes in with a lot of experience both as a player and as a coach and we believe that he can contribute a lot to this club. We believe that both of us together can achieve great things at this club.”
(Minerva Punjab FC)