The Gaurs have been one of the most consistent sides in the ISL over the years.
No matter where they come from or where they go, some people just leave a lasting impact. It might be positive or negative, but their presence remains fresh in the minds of all those whose lives have changed due to them. Football is one such world. Indian Super League (ISL) teams like FC Goa have seen a steady number of comings and goings in terms of players. However, certain players endear themselves to fans within a short period of time due to certain factors.
It could be their behaviour, style of play or attitude. They leave a huge imprint and people might come to matches due to the influence of such players. One year or five years, no matter how long these players have played the impact they have made remains fresh in the fans’ minds. The Gaurs can boast of many such fan-favourites.
On that note, Khel Now takes a look at the top five all-time fan-favourites at FC Goa.
5. Seriton Fernandes
Any Goan player playing for FC Goa is highly supported by the Gaurs’ faithfuls. Top that with amazing, leave-it-all-out-on-the-pitch performances and you’ll have huge throngs of people behind you. Seriton has done exactly that. Over the course of his four-year stint in the right-back position, Seriton has religiously went on with his duties with great maturity.
He has made a whopping 90 appearances for the side under two different managers and has scored one goal during his tenure at FC Goa. The full-back has been consistent and injury-free for the majority of his campaigns. Today his name is a constant fixture on the team-sheet. He has also shown leadership qualities, donning the captain’s armband, most notably during two crucial matches in the AFC Champions League 2021.
His high energy performances have enthralled fans and pundits alike. The Gaurs’ fans have made sure that his efforts for the FC Goa badge will not go unnoticed.
4. Edu Bedia
Edu Bedia was part of Sergio Lobera’s Spanish renaissance in the 2017-18 season. Among the core group of foreigners who enjoyed success under Lobera, Bedia was one of the few players retained when Juan Ferrando took over and with just cause.
The former Barcelona ‘B’ player was a crucial presence in midfield during the Lobera era and has made a total of 81 appearances for the Gaurs. He has scored 11 goals, including the historic first goal by an Indian club in the AFC Champions League. Juan Ferrando gave Bedia the armband and he has always carried it wisely, exhibiting a calm figure whilst heading the pack in battle.
His controlling presence in the middle of the park is a thing of joy and the Gaurs’ faithful have appreciated the same.
3. Brandon Fernandes
As mentioned earlier, homegrown lads are special to Goa fans. Similar to Seriton, Brandon’s rise came from the Goan football ranks, having played for the youth teams of local club Salgaocar fc. He also made appearances in the Goa Pro League and I-League with other clubs like Sporting Goa and Churchill Brothers. Despite a very short stint at Mumbai City FC, the creator-in-chief returned to Goa for the 2017-18 season.
He quickly made himself a key figure in the vibrant Lobera side of the time, growing and maturing into his role in the 2018-19 campaign. Brandon showed great flexibility which allowed him to play across midfield. However, he clinched the deal with his playmaking. The local lad has registered 18 assists in 62 ISL appearances for FC Goa and has also netted 10 goals in all competitions.
He stole the show on the continental stage providing the assist for the first-ever goal scored by an Indian team in the AFC Champions League. He is also trusted by Juan Ferrando with set-piece duties. A regular for India, Brandon’s exploits on the pitch are a huge boost for the fans in the stands.
2. Leo Moura
Leo Moura remains one of the biggest what-ifs in ISL history. The Brazilian midfielder was a key figure of the Zico era at FC Goa, playing a prominent role in the Gaurs’ run to the final. His sleek presence in the middle of the park endeared him to the football-loving fans of Goa.
His playmaking ability was unrivalled, notching an impressive 8 assists in the season to finish joint-top in the category. FC Goa went into the final with fresh momentum, but unfortunately the Brazilian was withdrawn due to injury at half-time, leading to a victory late in the game for their opposition, Chennaiyin FC. Fans still wonder what would have happened if Moura was there on the pitch during the last 45 minutes.
He did not return to the Gaurs’ fold next year. Goa finished last in the 2016 season, which inevitably led to a colossal rebuild. The Brazilian returned to his home nation to play for Metropolitano. But, the impact that the assist king of FC Goa had has stood the test of time.
1. Ferran Corominas
There is no doubt about the impact that Ferran Corominas has had in the ISL. The former Espanyol striker came to the club after what was a disappointing season for the Gaurs. The team had finished last in 2016 and did a complete overhaul for the 2017-18 campaign.
The then new manager Sergio Lobera, brought Corominas to play the No. 9 role. Three seasons of pure entertainment followed. Under Lobera’s attacking philosophy, the Spaniard blossomed scoring 48 goals and registering 16 assists in 57 matches. His goalscoring exploits earned him the nickname ‘Scoro’ among the Gaurs’ faithful.
He was a key figure in the Super Cup winning squad in the 2018-19 season. The Spaniard also bagged the Hero of the League award in the same campaign to go along with two Golden Boots. After the unceremonious exit of Lobera, Corominas left for Spain. However, he remains in every Gaur’s mind for the tantalizing displays he put up on the pitch. He came as a warrior and left as a hero.