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ISL feature: Carlos Pena has got his timing right

Carlos Pena

Bengaluru, April 20: FC Goa's newly-appointed coach Carlos Pena believes it is the perfect time for him to return to the Gaurs camp.

It is worth mentioning that the Indian Super League (ISL) outfit had announced the return of its former player Pena as the club's next head coach.

The Spaniard makes a return to Goan shores two years after he announced his retirement from the game as a player, after playing his final two seasons in the Orange of the Gaurs.

Carlos Pena appointed as FC Goa coachCarlos Pena appointed as FC Goa coach

"In my opinion, this is the perfect time to come back. I'm fully prepared right now. I've all my energy focussed towards putting my knowledge to help FC Goa to grow," Pena was quoted as saying by FC Goa Media in his first press conference after being unveiled as the head coach

"In regards to what happened last season, I watched almost all of the games from last season. There were many issues which included the head coach departing midway. Derrick (Pereira) did his best to best to work with what he had.

"Looking at the last season, I feel it's the perfect moment for me to come back and help the team."

Attacking football

Goa has always been known to play an attacking brand of football and Pena said he will look to do the same.

"I'll look to make the team play the football that FC Goa fans like. We will look to play attacking football. During my playing days as a full back I've always enjoyed attacking all the time. And as a coach so far in my previous teams, I've been looking to do the same," added Pena.

Carlos Pena

"I like my team to be proactive, to play with command of the ball, to take the initiative in games.

I don't like teams who wait for things to happen. Of course, our team should be balanced - in attack and defence. And that's how we'll look to win games."

No overhaul now

Last season did not go quite as planned for the Gaurs as they finished a lowly ninth and missed ISL play-offs for only the second time in eight seasons.

The new Gaffer, however, did not feel there was any need for a major overhaul of the side going into the next season.

"I don't think we've to repair anything. We've a number of quality players in the team. We could see some great performances from some of them even last season. Of course some players couldn't perform at the same level they are used to. However, I don't think we don't need any major repairs," opined Pena.

"We're going to build a strong team. We'll look to bring back the confidence and get the players performing back to their best."

Youngsters the key

Youth development has been the key for Goa's success and the 38-year-old reiterated that seeing them flourish in the future will be instrumental.

"I love the values and vision FC Goa has with these young players. I know which club I've signed for. I want to contribute to help them grow. The head coach of FC Goa must have his eyes on the Development Team and its players. It's part of the project.

"When I was at FC Goa as a player, I loved a number of young players that FC Goa had and how they were working with them. The club has some really hard workers, amazing coaches and amazing people working towards developing the young players. And I'll help them to do their jobs better," Pena signed off.

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Story first published: Wednesday, April 20, 2022, 10:48 [IST]
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