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Sainsbury dethroned at Crown

Ismail Vorajee / Khmer Times Share:
Englishman Sean Sainsbury has left former C-League champions Phnom Penh Crown. Courtesy PPCFC

Phnom Penh Crown have announced they have parted ways with divisive British head coach Sean Sainsbury after only a season at the helm. Crown announced the news on their official Facebook page yesterday, only a day after the final game of the 2018 C-League season.

“Crown Football Club wish to thank [Sean Sainsbury] for his leadership and training. We wish Sean great success in the future,” reads the official club statement.

Under Sainsbury, the six-time league champions fell behind their traditional rivals. While NagaWorld and Boeung Ket tussled for honours, Crown spent much of the season scrapping agsint their mid-table rivals.

Sainbury’s final game in charge was Sunday’s 2-1 defeat of bitter rivals Boeung Ket – a rare bright spot in a patchy season for Cambodia’s most successful club side. During his tenure he registered 11 wins, three draws and eight defeats in the C-League, as well as a loss in the quarter-finals of Hun Sen Cup. They last won the league title in 2015.

Sainsbury was criticised for his performance in the role and for a series of unusual tactical decisions. Jonny Campbell, an American defender, was favoured in attack despite a poor return. Sainsbury also placed faith in misfiring Iranian-forward Pouya Hosseini who ultimately left the club midway through his tenure.

The departure of South African wing wizard Shane Booysen to rivals Preah Khan Reach Svay Rien also occurred on Sainsbury’s watch, while the contract of much-loved Cambodian-French defender Kok Boris was not renewed.

Prior to leading Crown, he managed Pattaya United in Thailand between 2015-2017.

Meanwhile, NagaWorld boss Meas Channa said he was happy to see his clubs Nigerian striker George Bisan secure the C-League Golden Boot award. The Cambodian coach led NagaWorld to their third title last weekend, fighting off the challenge of Boeung Ket – and Bisan’s 28 goals were vital to success.

“I am really happy about the last George’s last match,” said Coach Channa of Bisan’s four-goal haul in the season-ender against National Police which ended 6-2. “I expect George to try to get another Top-Scorer award and he finally did it so I and we are very happy he was able to achieve it.”

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