The 25-year-old has been one of the most consistent performers in the country in the last few seasons.
FC Goa were on a superb run of form last season, reaching the final of the Indian Super League (ISL) only to fall short at the final hurdle against Bengaluru FC. Nevertheless, FC Goa sought redemption in the Super Cup, emerging victorious against I-League champions Chennai City FC, which helped Brandon Fernandes to finally make the cut for the Indian football team.
A Goan himself – Brandon Fernandes had already shown glimpses of the skills he possessed in previous seasons. A truly mesmerizing performance last season led to the midfielder being finally picked for the national team by new coach Igor Stimac.
Recently, Khel Now had the opportunity to meet and interact with Brandon Fernandes during FC Goa’s pre-season training session at the Athletics Stadium in Bambolim. “It feels really great to be called up for the national team to represent the country. It is something I have always looked forward to,” Fernandes began.
Incidentally, the style of football Sergio Lobera has developed at FC Goa is quite similar to that of Stimac’s, therefore making it easier for players who are part of both sides.
As for Brandon Fernandes, he has proved in the last couple of seasons that he has the caliber to play for the national team.
“For me, I wasn’t expecting a call-up, but it was always my aim. And for that, I had to make sure I was ready,” he said.
Favourite Playing Position
Despite the fact that Brandon is a natural No. 10, at FC Goa he extensively plays as a winger. Speaking about the position he wishes to play in the most, the player said, “I don’t mind playing in either of the positions as long as I get a chance. As a matter of fact, even if I play as an out-and-out winger, I tend to cut into the midfield and operate from the no. 10 position.”
“Coaches believe that I can cross the ball well and that is the reason they put me on the wings, but it doesn’t really matter to me as I try to give my best nonetheless,” explained Brandon.
Having mentioned coaches, Brandon Fernandes praised the philosophy of Lobera, saying it is the best for any player who likes to have more of the ball. “I enjoy playing under him a lot. Moreover, he instils a lot of confidence in the players.”
Moving on, the former Sporting Club de Goa, Mohun Bagan and Churchill Brothers player expressed his opinion on which one is better, the I-League or the ISL.
“I don’t want to compare, but at the same time I have to admit that the ISL has been a better league between the two.”
The 25 year-old also believes that since the inception of the ISL, players have received a boost thanks to the top-class facilities that they have been provided with. In short, in its six years, the league has definitely benefited the players and Indian football as a whole.