The 24-year-old winger spoke about his experience in the I-League, signing for the Gaurs and ambitions going forward.
For hardcore Indian football fans, Alexander Romario Jesuraj is a well-known figure. The young winger broke into the news with his stellar performances for Chennai City FC in the 2018-19 season, helping them win the I-League title. In the following campaign, he joined Mohun Bagan and contributed in their Durand Cup triumph as well as the I-League-winning run. Now, he faces another fresh challenge after returning to his parent club FC Goa for the 2020-21 season.
The winger came into the spotlight during the 2018-19 season when Akbar Nawas-inspired Chennai City emerged as the I-League champions. His exuberant displays from the wing helped him earn a lot of plaudits. Speaking about the memorable season, he said, “The I-League winning team of Chennai City was a very young and aspiring team.”
“The foreigners were highly supportive of us and they worked with us. We played together with a lot of understanding and each and every member of the team gave their 100% on the field,” he stated.
He was then brought in by FC Goa and was subsequently loaned to Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan. In Kolkata, he won his second I-League title, playing for the Mariners. “Playing for one of the oldest clubs in India was a new experience for me. I learned a lot last year. All coaching staff and team members were very supportive and the fans as well,” he quoted. “The pressure was always high to perform and the stadiums were jam-packed with fans,” he added.
After putting in some promising performances in the I-League in the past couple of years, it was natural for the big ISL clubs to come calling for Jesuraj. He, however, knew where he wanted to be. “FC Goa was one of the clubs I have dreamt of playing for. They also play a similar attacking style of football like Chennai City FC. Therefore, I signed for them without a second thought.”
Alexander Romario Jesuraj is now hoping that his title streak continues with the Gaurs. Having come very close to lifting the crown in recent years, the club aims to break the deadlock by winning their maiden Indian Super League title. Optimistically explaining his take on the same, the player asserted, “Winning two consecutive I-League titles has been a blessing for me. I am definitely going to do my best for FC Goa and looking forward to winning my first ISL title.”
Furthermore, he also had kind words for the Gaurs’ fans, thanking them for their unwavering support so far. “FC Goa fans are just amazing. They have always been there for the team. The fans gave me a warm welcome on social media. I am looking forward to their support for the team this season as well.”
Despite being in Goa, the support from the 12th man is something the Tamil Nadu player will miss on the pitch. Speaking on the absence of fans, Alexander Romario Jesuraj said, “We will definitely miss the fans this time. Although, it is a home ground for us, the support of fans was an extra boost.”
After finishing atop the table last season, FC Goa gained a historic qualification to the AFC Champions League. The 24-year-old believes that the tournament would be a new challenge. “The AFC Champions League is going to be really tough, However, we are working very hard to give our best.”
Finally, Alexander Romario Jesuraj also stated that working together with the team is the best way to improve himself as a player. “Key attribute for any footballer is to work hard and to work with your team. At the end of the day, you are successful if your team is playing well. I would say working hard and working with your team will help you grow as a player,” he concluded.