The youngster scored a Robben-esque goal to open his account in I-league 2018-19.

A young and all-Indian dynamic Shillong Lajong kicked-off their Hero I-League 2018/19 campaign with a bang as they came up trumps in the Northeast Derby against Aizawl FC recording a 2-1 win in front a passionate crowd at home.

Coached by Alison Kharsyntiew, the all-Indian Lajong side produced an exciting display of attacking football, with both their goals coming off the boots of Naorem Mahesh Singh, who was adjudged the Hero of the Match in what was his Hero I-League debut as well.

The man from Manipur produced an early contender for the Goal of the Season for his first strike, curling in a spectacular effort from outside the box with his left foot. For the second, he showed great anticipation and commitment as he was on hand to convert a cross from the left flank by Rakesh Pradhan.

AIFF Media caught up with the 19-year-old, who spoke about his wonder goal and hailed the home fans for their support as well. EXCERPTS:

Mahesh scored a brace to earn the crucial three points against Aizawl

How did it feel immediately when your first goal went in?

It was an unbelievable moment and I couldn’t believe it myself at first. Two seconds later, my teammates just started piling up on me and hugged me and that was just the most amazing moment of my life. 

What was the mood in the team like after winning your first match?

Getting the three points is absolutely fantastic. However, we know that we have got a lot more work to do. We are only getting started. 


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How has it been training under coach Alison? What did he tell you before the match?

Alison is a great coach and he believes in the team. He told us to go out there give our best and enjoy the game, which we did. 

What are your thoughts on the home crowd that came to the stadium yesterday? 

Our fans are the best! They cheered for us throughout the match and that gave us more confidence to play to the best of our abilities.

Which players – Indian & foreign – do you admire the most?

For me, Jackichand Singh is a real role model. And in the global game, my favourite player is Lionel Messi.