thumbnail Hello,

The Brazilian midfielder has backed his team to challenge for honours this term following last season’s third place finish in the league...

With the Federation Cup fast approaching, the pre-season of Churchill Brothers is in full flow as they hope to make a victorious beginning to their season. Roberto Mendes da Silva, better known as Beto, will be one of the key players for the Goan club in their quest for glory.

“It's always difficult to adjust, especially for me since I had played for six years at Dempo before, but now I’m at this club,” Beto told in an exclusive chat.

“Overall my first year was good as we won the Durand Cup and finished third in the I-League. Of course, once you get into the team, you don't want to get dropped again, but overall it was positive for us.”

On being asked about last season’s performances, that left them from being title contenders to third place in the national league, he felt that consistency, or rather a lack of it, played a part in them failing to win it.

“We had a chance to win it last year. But the few times that we needed to be consistent, we weren't,” the attacking midfielder remarked. “Hopefully this season, we won't have the same situation.”

The 32 year-old felt that the changing of managers always makes it unpredictable for the players as too what strategy he would adopt in the midst of the season. But he believes that if the team can work together and give their 100% for the club and manager, they can go on to achieve their targets this season.

Regarding Churchill Brothers new recruits, he felt there were some good moves by the club in the summer transfer market. “We have signed a defender, Bilal Najjarin and forward Akram Moghrabi, who are the foreigners in addition to Henri Antchouet, who was with us last season.”

Strive forward | Roberto Mendes da Silva enduring at a training session

“As I said, the team looks stronger, not only because of the foreign talent, but because of the overall squad. The team looks hungrier for titles,” the Brazilian further added.

The 33 year old also felt that the presence of Denzil Franco and Lenny Rodrigues, the two Churchill Brothers players who have recently established themselves in the national team will help motivate other young Indian players in the side.

“Now we have two national team players, Lenny and Denzil, so hopefully by end of the season, Churchill Brothers will have more national players.”

Giving a more detailed account of his association with the Brasil Futebol Academia (BFA) and also about the institution’s functioning, the midfielder stated, “My role in BFA was to help start it along with Jose Barreto. Now BFA has around 20 staff members working in various aspects such as coaching, management, etc. I just go there to have a look, but it is well taken care of so that I can concentrate on my game.”

“At BFA, our main aim is to discover good players. As of now, first we are looking to set up a hostel, where the boys will be accommodated as for the last two years we didn't have that. We have been reaching finals and winning championships, so I believe that with increase in the quality of the academy, the boys will get more opportunities to show their talent,” the former Dempo player concluded.

How do you stay up with football when on the move? With –your best source for mobile coverage of the beautiful game.