FC Goa has become the latest team to start their pre-season training in Goa. With the Indian Super League just over a month away, the Gaurs seem all set to defend the ISL League Winner's shield in addition to being ready for the upcoming AFC Champions League.
With FC Goa head coach Juan Ferrando out of the country amid the pandemic, the first team began their training sessions under the watchful gaze of Clifford Miranda.
At the moment, the entire FC Goa first team are put through the paces with Len Doungel and new signing Ishan Pandita being the only ones in quarantine. Lenny Rodrigues, the lynchpin of the FC Goa's midfield was seemingly upbeat about the prospect of getting back to football training.
"This has been a long and unusual off-season for us all. It’s been tough for us all. I am thrilled to get back on to the ground and start doing the things that we love,” stated Lenny Rodrigues, the man who many call Mr. Goa.
Lenny takes a moment to thank the COVID-19 workers
While practice continued, the 28-year-old FC Goa midfielder took a moment to thank all the frontline workers for their efforts to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This preseason will be crucial like every other. But the circumstances through which we have gone through and to come this far, this feels like an achievement. I would like to thank all the frontline workers for what they have done in these past few months. We are here today because of their efforts," said Rodrigues.
“It’s unusual this season because we are used to seeing fans throng to the ground for our first practice session of the season. For now, I would like to tell them that we know that you have us in your hearts and we yearn as much as you to do this together. We need to maintain protocol so that we come out safe from this pandemic, which is still out there and deadly as ever. Keep cheering for us," Rodrigues responded when asked about FC Goa fans.
In the context of the ISL, it would seem as though Juan Ferrando and the FC Goa team management have a lot of recruiting to do following the exits of Coro, Hugo Boumous, Ahmed Jahouh, and Mandar Rao Dessai.Published 05 Oct 2020, 18:25 IST