Vishal Kaith: If we don’t win ISL Trophy, Golden Glove is of no value to me
The ATK Mohun Bagan goalkeeper received the award for recording 11 clean-sheets as of now.
Vishal Kaith has been the talk of the town for the past few days. The 26-year-old custodian has played a integral role in elevating ATK Mohun Bagan all the way to the ISL 2022-23 semi-finals. In the process, he won the Golden Glove award as he has recorded a total 11 clean-sheets till now, including two in the playoffs stage.
Here we have a look at what Kaith said before the second-leg of the second semi-final on Monday.
A first time for me
This was the first-ever time, Vishal Kaith was handed over with this award. He has played for a few other ISL clubs as well, but had never achieved this feat.
“It feels good to receive the golden glove. It’s a dream for any goalkeeper to win this award. Be it the World Cup or the ISL, I used to see various goalkeepers win this award. It was my dream to win it. It’s the first time I received this award. It will motivate me to do well in the upcoming games.”
Not satisfied with the award
A perfect team man as he is, Vishal Kaith is not over the moon after receiving the Golden Glove. Rather he is completely focused on his club’s ambitions.
“I’m not satisfied by winning the Golden Glove. I have two ambitions in front of me. Firstly, to keep a clean sheet in the next two games. Secondly, win the next two games and lift the ISL Trophy. That will be my aim when I take the field on Monday. When I take the field, I don’t want to keep this achievement at the back of my mind. If we don’t win the ISL Trophy, this award is of no value to me.”
“It’s my duty”
Firm under the sticks? Yes. But Vishal Kaith is also firm with his words. He is in no mood to lose focus. The goalkeeper admits it’s his duty to save the goals.
“Although I have won the Golden Glove, I am nowhere near my best form. My aim is to perform even better. I am in the limelight because I have saved a lot of goals. But I think, that’s the duty of a goalkeeper. And I have just done that. For this, I am grateful to all my teammates and the coaching staff. It is because of them that I have been able to achieve this feat. I dedicate this achievement to them.”
Vishal Kaith’s best save?
It’s difficult for a fan to adjudge the best save Vishal Kaith has made in this campaign. He has undoubtedly saved the game for Bagan on numerous occasions. However, a not-so-diplomatic Kaith revealed his best save of the season.
“Football is a team game. It’s not possible to win matches if the entire team doesn’t play well. Many people want to know which is the best save I made. For me, the save I made on Thursday against Hyderabad FC, at the initial stages of the game. The one which Joel Chianese headed and I dived towards the right to deny it. That’s my best save of the season. That header gave me a tough time.”
Fans’ love of more value than Golden Glove
On 4th March, against Odisha FC, Vishal Kaith suffered a scary injury which saw the goalie lose his senses. Even the ambulance arrived to take him to the hospital. The 26-year-old shared how overwhelmed he was to receive the support of the fans.
“Hailing from Himachal Pradesh, I didn’t expect myself to start regularly for a team of ATK Mohun Bagan’s stature. I have started in all 21 games for them in the ISL. This has been possible because of the love I received from the fans.
“I got a better view of their love when I received that shoulder injury against Odisha FC a few days back. I have never suffered such an injury in my life. Later I heard that I was even senseless for a couple of minutes and the ambulance had also arrived. The way in which everyone ran forward to help me has overwhelmed me. When I got back on my feet, the way in which the fans cheered and chanted for me, I will always remember that.
“I was admitted to the hospital for a few tests. When I came back to the hotel and checked my cell phone, I saw many people have messaged me praying for my good health. This love is of more value to me than the Golden Glove.
I will be most happy when I can bring home the trophy for the fans,” he concluded.
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