Immediately after his team clinched the National Football League title, East Bengal coach Subhash Bhowmick declared the next target is winning the Asian Club Championship and reaching at least the quarter-finals of ASEAN Club Cup.
Talking to reporters after East Bengal beat Vasco 4-0 in the penultimate round of the NFL and assured themselves of the title, Bhowmick said: "Philosophically, a coach is as good as his team is. I am glorified by my players' glory which reflected on me. I am grateful to them for this memorable season."
East Bengal created a record by wining all the five tournaments they figured in this season. They won the Kolkata Super League, IFA Shield, Durand Cup, Independence Cup in Assam and now the gruelling NFL.
"In my playing days we won five out of six. I think no other club of the country will be able to break this record," the elated coach said.
East Bengal will try to retain the same squad he said, adding he has already requested club management to work on it.
He, however, refused to comment on the reported departure of his ace striker Mike Okoro for a Polish club for next season.
"I have a fantastic side; my reserved bench is as strong as the playing eleven. They all contribute in the match," Bhowmick, who represented India in the 1970 Asian Games, where India lost to Burma in the semi-finals and eventually finished with a bronze medal, added.
Talking about Friday's crucial match, the former East Bengal and Mohun Bagan ace said it will be remembered in the annals of Indian football as a perfect combination of man marking and concerted attacks.
"The moment there was the hype about Vasco having a formidable attacking side, I knew my team would finish them in style, and so they did," the coach said.
A dejected Vasco coach Derrick Pereira said: "We got beaten by a better team. My midfield did not play well. In fact, my players tried to prove their individual brilliance and there we failed."
Vasco's main strikers Rui Wanderley and Marcos Pereira were quick to salute the performance of Brazilian ace Douglas D'Silva, whose two goals put East Bengal on the path to victory.
Douglas, for his part, said he was happy to contribute significantly towards East Bengal's victory.
"This was my best match in the NFL," he said, adding he's looking forward to play some good football next season too.