Sudeva Delhi FC want to appoint Alex Ambrose, sexual abuse accused, as coach

The CoA has informed the Sports Authority of India (SAI) about the incident. Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

I-League club Sudeva Delhi FC have revealed their plans to hire Alex Ambrose as coach. Ambrose was sacked last year as assistant coach of Indian women's U-17 team for alleged sexual misconduct involving a minor during a training and exposure tour of Europe last year. A Delhi court had in February issued a warrant of arrest against him after an FIR was registered at a police station in Dwarka under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

Sudeva Delhi FC owner Anuj Gupta told PTI that his club had applied to the AIFF for clearance to hire Ambrose. He also defended the move, saying a person is innocent until proven guilty and he cannot be deprived of earning his livelihood through his profession.

"He (Ambrose) has not been proven guilty. He is currently on bail, and he cannot be barred from earning his livelihood. So, we have not done anything wrong (by appointing Ambrose as coach)," Gupta told PTI on Monday.

"We cannot do anything if the AIFF decides not to clear him (as coach) because all the players and staff need to be registered under the Centralised Registration System (CRS)," Gupta, who is also the president of Football Delhi, told PTI.

The PTI story, quoting sources, said the AIFF top brass considers Sudeva Delhi FC's move as "unacceptable".

The incident first came to light during the team's exposure trip to Norway, where Ambrose was allegedly caught in an inappropriate situation with a member of the side. He was recalled immediately to India.

AIFF, which was then run by the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA), had put out a statement: "An event of misconduct has been reported in the U-17 women's team, currently on an exposure tour to Europe. The AIFF follows a zero-tolerance policy on indiscipline. As an initial action, the Federation has provisionally suspended the individual pending further investigation."

Sudeva Delhi FC finished 12th and last in the I-League last season and were relegated to the second division.