For Eugeneson Lyngdoh, football is everything, and that was reason he opted for the beautiful game rather than being an engineer. It was sheer passion, commitment and dedication, which were the driving forces for him. After being a â?¹1.05 crore pick during the Indian Super League (2015) players’ auction, Lyngdoh has made a name for himself. One of the new young turks to make it to the Indian national side, Eugeneson has become a household name in the country when one talks about football.
“Football is everything and there is no second thought about it,”said Eugenson while talking to sportskeeda.com.
Although it has not been a rosy time playing in the second edition of ISL for FC Pune City, Lyngdoh, has garnered the ambition to enrich the game in future. “It is sad we could not make it to the knock-out stages despite being a fancied side when the League began, but that has become history,” said Eugenson, who was on loan from I-League club Bengaluru FC for the 2015 Indian Super League season.
Coming to Pune to ply his trade wasn’t new to the midfielder, he’d last visited the city as a callow 19 year old. Eugeneson came to Pune in the year 2005 in pursuit of his BE degree at Maharashtra Academy of Engineering (MAE). After representing his college and later the University, he took a special liking for the game. “I found football a better option, and that is the reason why I opted to play the game. Since I come from a land of football, Manipur, my parents supported me in taking this game seriously, and that boosted my morale, and today I have something special for them,” he said.
“Academics is needed but only academics cannot make a perfect man. If sports is added, then the perfect human circle is complete,” said the Indian international, who made his international debut against Nepal in the first leg of a two-legged 2018 FIFA World Cup pre-qualifier in a 2-0 win.
Eugeneson first donned the shirt of his father’s team Rangdajied United, where his father SK Sunn was president. But, the team could not make much impact in the I-league and were demoted. By then Eugeneson had made a name for himself in football and was courted by India's most professional club - Bengaluru FC in 2014. This was a clear indication that football was where Eugeneson belonged and not in the class room.
“I did come to Pune to do my engineering but it turned out to be something else entirely as I took off from the class rooms to the playing arena and was committed to the game. Now, I have ‘graduated’ and I have much more to gain from this game,“ said the striker, who, during his third year in the engineering course, realised that football had a special place in his heart.
The Shillong born mid fielder, won the best Indian player of I-League in the 7th Indian Football Awards organised by Footballer Player’s Association last year. Sandesh Jhingan was the other player who shared the same dias with Eugeneson, winning the award for his performances in the ISL. Eugeneson may not be in contention for the ISL award this year, but recognizes the potential of the tournament he was just part of.
“ISL has given a new lease of life for the game in the country, and for me it has been one of the best things to happen. Rubbing shoulders with renowned international players is a dream comes true for me. I am sure it will go a long way and we Indians will soon see ourselves rise globally,” said Eugeneson.
“Cricket is the popular sport of our country, I want to change that mind-set of youngsters and make football popular, which is the way forward for me,” signed off Lyngdoh, now the key player for Bengaluru FC, India & FC Pune City. It’s been a long and rewarding journey for the Shillong-born midfielder, but he can definitely say that he made the right choice when picking football.