Kerala Blasters set to rope in Mohun Bagan's I-League winning coach Kibu Vicuna

Kibu Vicuna (centre) shares a selfie with fans after Mohun Bagan clinched their second I-League title with a 1-0 win against Aizawl FC in Kalyani. AIFF Media

Mohun Bagan's I-League winning coach Kibu Vicuna is in talks with Indian Super League franchise Kerala Blasters FC and a formal announcement of the appointment will be made soon, a team official said on Thursday.

"Yes, we are in talks with Vicuna. We have also spoken to a few other coaches for the upcoming season. But due to the prevailing crisis due to the coronavirus outbreak, a formal announcement is due," the official told PTI.

Vicuna, 48, led Bagan to their second I-League title (fifth national league) with four matches to spare. However, the Spaniard will not get his contract renewed as the club's new principal owners, ATK, have made it clear that Antonio Lopez Habas would remain the head coach of the team which won the ISL title this time.

Mohun Bagan are all set to be rechristened ATK-Mohun Bagan from June, after the RPSG Group acquired a majority shareholding of 80 per cent in the oldest football club of the country.

Vicuna was not available for a comment but according to sources, his negotiation with Kerala has reached "advanced level and the announcement is due anytime".

The Kochi-based outfit finished seventh in the recently-concluded ISL, failing to advance for a third time as the club is on a revamp mode with a new Lithuanian sporting director Karolis Skinkys playing a key role in roping in Vicuna.

They have also roped in former ATK left-back Tiri and promising Indian leftback Nishu Kumar, while retaining Bartholomew Ogbeche and Sergio Cidoncha.