As Odisha FC gets ready to play its first game of the eighth season of the Hero Indian Super League, one of the three captains of the team Victor Mongil has opened up about the challenges and the project that the Kalinga Warriors have for the coming few months. Odisha FC will start its Hero ISL campaign against Bengaluru FC on 24th November at Tilak Maidan, Vasco, and Coach Kiko Ramirez’s men are all set for their season opener.
Speaking to the OFC Media Team, Victor Mongil mentioned, “It feels good to be here in India. I have spoken about this many times on social media and during interviews. I love your country. When I was here previously in another season (two seasons ago), I only stayed here for three months. This season, I wanted to stay here for longer but with the Covid 19 pandemic, the situation is bad. I stay connected to India always in my mind. Now, I am very very happy staying here and also I think we have a very big project this season. I am happy and looking forward to starting this season.”
“It’s a big project and we have good challenges in front of us but I think we have good players this season too. The squad is very new and I think only 6-7 or a maximum of 10 players stayed here in the past. And also, the foreigners are new. But when we started the pre-season, we are like one family and good teammates. We help each other in the team. I repeat that we are eager to start this season.”
When asked about the foreign signings of OFC this season and Victor being familiar with them, the Spanish defender replied, “Yes, but if you think how many foreigners do we have in the squad. It’s only six players. Normally, there are too many Indian players in the squad. It’s important but also it’s important that the Indian players stay together throughout the season. Hopefully, we will have good results throughout the season.”
“But, during the regular season, it’s important to stay together. The mentality of the foreigners is to help them in everything. Helping them on the pitch and outside as well. It’s important to learn the new rules of the (coaching) staff. It’s a different style than the last season. It’s important to stay together in good and bad moments and I think everybody is ready. Many big players have played in this League. I think the Indian players learn too much from some of the big players. Now, the Indian players have more quality than they had in the past. I think that Odisha FC also has very good Indian players and we believe that we can pose a very good challenge this season.”
Odisha FC is known for promoting young Indian players and giving them the platform to showcase their skills. Ahead of the new season, OFC had announced the promotion of three of its youth team graduates into the Hero ISL squad. Victor, being one of the senior players in the team and also being someone with a great experience of playing professional football in many parts of the world, will also be involved in nurturing the young minds in the side.
The 29-year-old stated, “I think that these guys have vision and intensity in the training and that is visible in their eyes. I remember when I played for the first time as a professional football player, I see the same in these guys. It’s very important. Humility and working hard is important because football and life are not only about beautiful things. These guys will also have to go through the bad moments but they have to wake up, continue and work hard. Hopefully, in this season, these guys can play with us with the objectives that we have and I think the way is the same – intensity, working hard. Hopefully, these guys will have very good career in the future.”
Victor concluded the interview with a small message for the Juggernauts. He expressed, “The first word is thank you so much everybody for the good message for me in my new challenge at Odisha FC. I love your country, I love the people. Hopefully, the fans come to the stadium very soon and I can receive the support. We can try for a good season this year because we will try to stay at the top of the League. The fans will receive a strong team in Odisha and enjoy together. One more time, thank you so much the fans of Odisha FC, the Juggernauts. I have received too many messages on social media.”
Click here to get your hands on our Official Hummel Home-Kit for 2021-22!