ISL 2020: ‘Quite excited at prospect of replacing key players’, says FC Goa’s director of football Ravi Puskur – Sports News

Ravi Puskur, FC Goa’s director of soccer, spoke in regards to the workforce’s success on and off the pitch, the ambitions for the upcoming season and the rebuilding course of underneath new head coach Juan Ferrando.

In the six seasons of Indian Super League (ISL), FC Goa has achieved the highest 4 spot in 5 of them, in actual fact they topped the standings twice. They have been additionally runners-up twice within the competitors’s remaining. Last 12 months, they have been one of the best aspect within the league, profitable 12 matches out of 18 and securing a spot within the group stage of the AFC Champions League.

Although they’re but to win the ISL trophy, FC Goa has been one of the constant groups because the inception of the league. The workforce’s model of soccer, particularly underneath former coach Sergio Lobera, has been revelled whereas their recruitment technique has additionally been on the mark.

Ravi Puskur, FC Goa’s director of soccer, not too long ago spoke to Firstpost in regards to the workforce’s success on and off the pitch, the ambitions for the upcoming season and the rebuilding course of underneath new head coach Juan Ferrando.


FC Goa has been a hit story on and off the sector. Be it about establishing an identification or performances on the pitch. Is there a specific blueprint the membership has been following?

There’s no such blueprint. It all stems from our house owners. Our house owners got here in season three, and there was a little bit of a niche between season three and 4. So it allowed them to grasp the nuances of what’s taking place on the membership. To perceive one of the best practices and all the things. So then we selected a imaginative and prescient. What we wish to do for the membership going ahead. And it was not presupposed to be for a 12 months or two however to be a long run undertaking. Something that enables us to construct a stable basis.

The very first thing we mentioned was what do we have to do to enhance Indian footballers and notably, Goan footballers. And how does that resonate from the fashion of soccer we wished to play. One factor we understood was that we would have liked to play a mode of soccer the place a participant must be on the ball as a lot as attainable. Because the one means a participant can enhance will not be by operating extra kilometres and kilometres aimlessly. It’s by him making smarting selections on the ball and off the ball. We don’t imagine {that a} participant has to run 20kms to have a profitable sport. A participant can run 5 minutes, and if he does that extraordinarily nicely, attacking the fitting areas, taking over the ball on the proper moments and making the fitting selections, it could actually have an effect. So primarily based on that, we determined we wished to have gamers on the ball.

Because the extra touches you have got on the ball, the longer you spend on the ball, the extra superior your considering of your sport will get. You will not be simply interested by the kilometres to run but additionally about area, distance and time. This is what we wished to do on the first workforce degree to begin the pattern. And the important thing issue is all of those is having a youth improvement program, which additionally replicated the identical issues. You cannot count on a participant who has been enjoying a totally totally different fashion to come back in and adapt to our fashion as a result of it is not straightforward to tug off. It requires loads of observe and understanding of the sport. It’s not a blueprint as such we copied however the concept comes from the truth that what we have to do to develop Indian soccer and particularly Goan footballers.

This is not only for five-five years. Internally, we have now targets set for 10 years. While the targets can differ when it comes to monetary aims and different such issues however one factor that can have a steady presence is the fashion of soccer. Because we’re satisfied that that is one of the simplest ways to develop gamers.

ISL 2020 Quite excited at prospect of replacing key players says FC Goas director of football Ravi Puskur

‘The very first thing we mentioned was what do we have to do to enhance Indian footballers and notably, Goan footballers’. ISL/Sportzpics

You spoke about growing Indian gamers and particularly Goan footballers. But on the finish of the day, ISL is a contest with stakes concerned, like profitable the trophy and qualifying for the AFC Champions League. How do you propose to strike this steadiness of growing gamers but additionally profitable?

Look, that’s the final objective. Being in a position to produce high quality gamers however on the identical time be aggressive. It’s not a straightforward activity. It’s a balancing act. What that requires us to do is talk successfully to the primary workforce and youth improvement and guarantee all of us are on the identical web page. Players development is essential to us but additionally profitable. If it seems like a participant who’s presumably leaving, there is a sure place to be crammed, we’ll clearly look internally for alternative. If we will not do this then we have now to look exterior.

What is a precedence? The precedence is to steadiness each. We wish to win trophies and the extra we win trophies, the gamers will really feel extra assured and likewise the membership turns into an incredible vacation spot for gamers from each India and outdoors India as nicely.

Recruitment has additionally been a giant constructive for the membership. Does the membership all the time recruit gamers interested by their long-term aims and the place does the position of head coach come on this side?

What is prime is that the top coach, the membership and all people within the recruitment workforce are on the identical web page. If we do this, then it’s now not a rocket science. Ideally, a coach ought to be capable of inform us that that is the kind of participant I’m searching for. Let’s take an instance of a striker. A coach ought to be capable of inform us what sort of a striker he’s searching for. Is he searching for a giant goal man? Because he is aware of how the puzzle items will match on the pitch. His job is to suit them collectively and get one of the best end result. He has to inform us whether or not he’s searching for a striker who’s massive and powerful, With his again to the objective, he hyperlinks up the play and many others. Or is he searching for a striker who’s enjoying the final man on the road. Always making an attempt to beat the offside entice, exploiting areas, operating the channels. Always attacking the objective and taking the defenders on fairly than simply being a hyperlink up man.

So as soon as we have now readability on what a coach expects from a participant, our job is to seek out one of the best profile that matches the requirement. Not solely we assess the enjoying high quality of a participant but additionally how the participant will adapt to the Indian circumstances. We should issue all this stuff under consideration as a result of making certain a participant is profitable on the pitch additionally has loads to do how he’s feeling off the pitch.

In phrases of recruiting at a youthful age, to be trustworthy, you will by no means get an ideal participant. We attempt to determine the traits within the participant that works finest in our system. Or fairly, we see if there is a potential to enhance. We see if the participant’s talent set might be taken to the following degree.

Can you inform me in regards to the new head coach Juan Ferrando? The story behind his hiring and his imaginative and prescient to take the membership ahead.

Juan Ferrando’s appointment was in works for the three and a half to 4 months. Even after we narrowed down the record of candidates from 100 plus to final 4 or 5, we made it a degree to talk to them a minimum of twice or thrice. And it was totally different ranges of dialog. First it was with me after which the house owners have been concerned after which there have been folks within the recruitment workforce speaking. It was for us to get to know the individual as finest as attainable and likewise for them to know what we are attempting to realize right here.

Juan was anyone who purchased into the method of what we are attempting to realize and who shared our imaginative and prescient. He is a coach who all the time tries to work with the youth, combine them into the primary workforce and that may be a massive a part of our imaginative and prescient as nicely. Juan shopping for into that was a giant plus level. Juan can also be anyone who identifies with our fashion of soccer. Promoting younger gamers was only one issue. We have a basis constructed for ourselves. In the final two-three seasons, we have now seen success with the primary workforce and with the youth workforce, so it is also about taking them to the following degree. We felt Juan was anyone who may do this.

So, once you attempt to recruit overseas gamers and coaches, particularly from Europe, is it arduous so that you can persuade them to come back to India and play soccer?

ISL 2020 Quite excited at prospect of replacing key players says FC Goas director of football Ravi Puskur

‘If you see the profiles of the gamers who’re coming right here, it’s altering.’ Sportzpics

To be utterly trustworthy, it’s altering fairly a bit. When we first began having overseas gamers on our shores, it was a bit like ‘we’re going to this unique league the place we do not understand how it will be’. They had the everyday picture of how India goes to be like. Over the years, gamers have come and seen what India can supply when it comes to enjoying high quality, the way in which the gamers are handled and the footballing challenges. Now gamers from Spain’s Segunda Division are asking if there are engaging presents from India. It is a league that’s financially extra engaging in comparison with what they’re incomes in Spain and likewise they wish to see what it’s like (enjoying in ISL) as a result of it is a street much less travelled.

If you see the profiles of the gamers who’re coming right here, it’s altering. When the ISL started, overseas gamers’ common age was round 34 or 35. Now the typical would’ve lowered by three-four years. So, it was tough to start with but it surely has steadily improved. When we goal coaches, we strive to herald anyone who’s younger, hungry and desires to show himself. Obviously Zico was a particularly excessive profile appointment. But ever since then, we tried a unique pattern. We tried to deliver coaches who’re hungry to show but additionally have confirmed already prior to now when it comes to outcomes and all the things. The course of is unquestionably getting simpler for positive.

What are the membership’s ambitions for the upcoming season? And is it a fear that a number of key gamers won’t be current for the following season?

The ambition has by no means modified for FC Goa as a membership. Over the previous six years, we have now confirmed that we’re probably the most constant workforce within the ISL. We will proceed to try this within the subsequent season as nicely. We are a workforce that might be competing for the highest honours. That won’t ever change. The house owners have all the time mentioned that FC Goa needs to be an admired membership however FC Goa must also be a profitable membership. We have the AFC Champions League as nicely so clearly we wish to put up our greatest foot ahead given the truth that it is not simply Goan followers’ eyes however all the nation might be watching.

In phrases of gamers leaving, we’re not frightened. We are literally fairly excited on the prospect of changing these gamers. When gamers like Ahmed Jahouh, Mourtada Fall, Coro and Lanza (Manuel Lanzarote) first got here in, they have been unknown. What have they accomplished since they got here to FC Goa? They grew to become family names. We really relish that problem. While we’re a membership that desires to compete and spend adequately, we additionally imagine in getting the right worth for gamers that we deliver on board. We wish to do good enterprise. We should be a sustainable, economical membership the place we wish to guarantee we’re not spending past our means.

We will not be frightened in any respect. Ultimately, in the event you see the worldwide sample of footballing cycles, they have a tendency to final three to 4 seasons. Because generally, the concepts go stale or outcomes do not go in the fitting means. For one purpose or the opposite, cycles will not be lasting.

So the administration had anticipated that FC Goa should undergo a rebuilding course of this season?

See, what’s the one factor that by no means stops? Time. Time additionally means ageing of gamers, considering of recent concepts and many others. We had tough concepts. We know what’s going to value us if we’re going to hold sure gamers. We had the conversations. My work for season 2021-22 will begin the day I signed the final overseas participant this season. Immediately we’re interested by the long run.

In an excellent situation, what we attempt to do is for each place, we have now three or 4 backups lined up in case anyone decides to depart or switch out and many others. That’s the one means you stay secure available in the market. It is by figuring out what’s on the market, gathering as a lot data as attainable to make sure that ought to something occur, it would not come as a shock to us.

With the entry of City Football Group, house owners of Mumbai City FC, the monetary energy equation has come into image. With higher budgets, groups can purchase high expertise. Do you suppose it is a concern in your membership and usually to the level-playing subject within the league?

It’s not a priority as such as a result of the switch market may be very fluid. Yes, economics do play a giant issue when it comes to participant actions and all. But, we have now to have a look at it this fashion: what’s the degree of the league, what we have to do to achieve the league and the way we are able to determine the fitting gamers. Yes, you may get high quality gamers by paying an enormous amount of cash. How we’d wish to cope with it’s by figuring out gamers with an identical degree of efficiency with out spending as a lot cash as different groups are spending. We wish to spend however we wish to do it responsibly.

Sure, there are golf equipment with financially greater appetites however that is the truth now. We should now adapt and see what works finest for us. We know the truth that exists and the way can we place ourselves within the league to stay aggressive. And it is easy. We should develop our personal gamers. We should develop our personal gamers to the purpose the place each time we want a alternative, I can look internally fairly than compete with the golf equipment available in the market and discover direct replacements.

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