FC Goa’s new man at the back, Ivan Gonzalez, is thrilled to have finally landed in Goa and can’t wait to start preparations as the Gaurs look to defend their ISL League Winners’ Shield.
“Finally, we are here. It has been a long wait,” remarked the defender whilst in quarantine. “We are happy to be in India and start the preseason.”
“The pre-season will be crucial this season. I am looking forward to spending time with my team-mates, coaches and staff. There is already a positive vibe that I get all around the club. I am looking forward to putting the grind in. We have to quickly grasp the details and get familiar with the coach’s style,” Gonzalez added.
The Spaniard, who was a defining presence at the back for Cultura Leonesa all these years, will look to have a similar impact on the FC Goa team this season. Along with James Donachie, the 30-year-old will look to shore up the defence as the Gaurs again look to go in search of goals.
The new season has thrown up a whole new challenge for everyone in the league. The COVID-19 pandemic has meant that all the games will be held in Goa and there will be no spectators in the stadium. These new circumstances have altogether presented new scenarios which have become the norm. And that has now manifested new challenges.
“One of the most important things this season will be the psychological side of things. Psychological preparation is a must for the long haul. A lot of players will be away from homes and families. We have to be mentally strong. Our focus will have to be only on one thing - to get better every day,” remarked Gonzalez.
“The difference, this season might all come down to focus on the job ahead. I am not one for excuses and I won’t accept my team giving one as well. We will all look to work hard and improve every day.
“We only have 2-3 hours every day to train and it will be the best time of the day, for that reason. These two to three hours of training - we have to be focused, ready, and enjoy the work hard,” the defender said.
After arriving in Goa on October 10, Gonzalez -- along with his other Spanish team-mates and coach Juan Ferrando -- is currently in quarantine for 14 days as per Indian Super League protocols.