Mumbai City FC have announced that Head Coach Des Buckingham will leave the Islanders with immediate effect. The 38-year-old Englishman has made the decision to pursue an opportunity back in his hometown in the United Kingdom with EFL League One club Oxford United.
From Oxford, Des had spells playing with youth and reserve sides of Reading FC and Oxford United FC during his formative years.
Des leaves Mumbai City FC as the Club’s longest serving Head Coach (72 games) and the youngest coach to win an ISL League Shield, winning the league title in the 2022-23 season while breaking 17 all-time ISL records along the way.
He departs holding the league’s all-time highest win percentage (57.8%), highest points per league game average (1.96) among coaches with a minimum 20 games and as the fastest coach to reach 100+ goals in ISL history.
Des also led Mumbai City to AFC Champions League history in 2022 as the Islanders became the first Indian club to win a game in Asia’s premier club football competition, finishing an unprecedented second in their group.
Kandarp Chandra, CEO of Mumbai City FC, said:
Des came into the Club in a period of transition and did incredibly well not just to help lay the foundations of an elite football club but also to achieve great success both domestically in the Indian Super League and continentally at the AFC Champions League.
While we are sad to see him leave, Des wants to take up a project that is close back home in the English Football League.
His contribution to Mumbai City cannot be understated and with best wishes for the future, we say goodbye to Des and look towards the next chapter for Mumbai City.
Mumbai City FC bid farewell to Des and wish him well on his future endeavours. The Club will issue a statement on his successor in due course.