Ever since the inception of the Hero ISL, the subcontinent has witnessed some pure samba magic and our next guest on Sports Talk is one such fan favourite. We caught up with Marcelinho for an exclusive interview and here’s what he had to say.
Back in the summer of 2016, Brazilian pocket dynamo Marcelinho was on a break from football after mutually parting ways with Brazilian side Anápolis, unaware that a challenge awaits him in Asia. “I had a call from Prashant (Former CEO of Delhi Dynamos) to be with delhi dynamos squad, but without a lot of expectations, and nobody expected so good season,” Marcelinho told SportsKindle about how he made his way to India.
Marcelinho has been a part of the Indian Super League since the third season and has seen the picture of football change in India very closely. “The Improvements are massive. The players are more strong and fit, tactically sound and alot of other improvements have taken place,” he said.
The Brazilian went down the memory lane and recalled the most memorable match of his career till date. It was a trip to Turkey when his former side Atromitos faced off against Turkish giants Fenerbahce in the UEFA Europa League. “I can remember a game against Fenerbahce in Turkey, a full stadium like Kerala, that type of games are memorable,” he added.
The former golden boot winner also told us about what keeps him going about his profession and said, “Small challenges and happiness to do the sport with passion motivates me,”
“Good sleep is crucial for me and alot of water, max condition to avoid cramps and to be energetic,” he added when being asked about how he prepares himself for a big game.
Football is known as ‘the beautiful game’ all across the globe because it is undoubtedly the best sport on the planet and Marcelinho told us about what excites him most about Football. “What excites me the most is when the coach puts all the confidence on me and gives me a chance to show my talent,” he exclaimed.
Indian football is writing one of greatest comebacks in the history of the game but there’s plenty to learn from other footballing powerhouses in order to excel. “Teams need more financial support from the government and sponsors, team needs to be solid for a long term project and more academies should be set-up to develop the sport from a younger age,” he cited when being asked about what Indian Football needs to learn from 5 time World Cup winners Brazil.
The former Atletico Madrid B player highly appreciated India’s unique diversity and said, “The different type of cultures in a same country according to states and the respect between the Indian people, the humbleness and the diversity impressed me the most.”
The Brazilian maestro sounded very excited while summing up his experience in India’s top flight. “It was amazing, memorable and I will be eternally grateful for the experience in India. I had goals, games and many friends there in India.”
“And I would like to be a part of Indian football forever, in the future as a staff, Coach or director manager to give back the experience and to increase the football always,” he concluded.