Virat Kohli compares himself to Cristiano Ronaldo; calls Manish Pandey the best footballer in the Indian team
Celebrity Football is back as Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli's All Heart FC takes on All Stars FC, a team comprising all the big names in Bollywood led by Ranbir Kapoor, in a friendly football match at the Andheri Sports Complex in Mumbai on October 15.
Ahead of the 2017 Celebrity Clasico, Indian skipper Kohli spoke about various aspects and strategies for the match on the sidelines of the recently-concluded India-Australia series.
He praised Mohammad Shami for being a good goalkeeper last year and conceded that he is not sure who will take up the gloves this time. Shami certainly has competition from former South African great Jonty Rhodes, who put his name in the hat for the goalie's role yesterday.
"Mohammad Shami was pretty good at goalkeeping when we played football with the team last time. But I am not sure who is going to take up the gloves this time around,” Kohli told Jatin Sapru in a Star Sports exclusive.
Later in the video, Kohli was asked about his FIFA rating for which he bragged, stating that he is good when it comes to shooting, doesn't have a weaker foot and thinks he is a complete footballer. He also added that he thinks of himself as Real Madrid's Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo.
“Someone asked me what would be my Fifa rating, I said 98. Not below that at all. I am good at shooting, my right foot is good, my left foot is good. As a footballer, I think I am a complete player. In my head I am Ronaldo,” he added.
Kohli also shared some of the tactics ahead of the match as he conceded that both he and MS Dhoni would play on the wings and the best footballer in the Indian team, Manish Pandey, would play in the midfield. Kohli also hinted at Dhoni playing as a striker and he himself playing in the midfield if Manoj Tiwary doesn't turn up for the match, which is certain as he would be playing for Bengal against Chhatisgarh in the Ranji Trophy.
“I feel that the best part of my game is sprinting and passing the ball accurately to the guys who score goals. MS (Dhoni) I think would be right winger because he is pretty quick, maybe he can be centre-forward as well. His positioning is very good and he reads passes very well. Manish (Pandey) is the best footballer in the team. He is playing in the midfield position. Manoj was also good last season. I don't know whether he will make it this time. If he doesn't turn up, I might play in the midfield along with Manish as you need guys who can run up and down. Kedar is also good when it comes to playing as a forward. He has a strong foot and shoots well. Apart from him, MS, me and Manish shoot well,” Kohli concluded.
All Heart FC: Virat Kohli (C), MS Dhoni, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, PR Sreejesh, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rohan Bopanna, Anup Sridhar, Yuzvendra Chahal, B. Mangaldas, Anirudh Srikanth, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kedar Jadhav, S. Badrinath, Hardik Pandya, Ajinkya Rahane, Pawan Negi, Digvijay, Rohit Sharma, Zaheer Khan, Jasprit Bumrah, Ashish Nehra, Jonty Rhodes and Umesh Yadav.