I-League 2018-19: NEROCA's Varney Kallon not bothered about Gift Raikhan's departure

The Liberian defender believes that Mohun Bagan are the primary title contenders...

NEROCA defender Varney Kallon believes his team has what it takes to lift the title and considers Mohun Bagan and East Bengal to be the two sides to beat this season.

Kallon was awarded the Best Defender of the League as he stood like a rock in defence. He was one of the primary architects behind NEROCA's second-place finish in their debut season in top-tier football.

"I see us as the first contenders. Mohun Bagan have got a good team. They are one of the contenders for me. Apart from that, I look at East Bengal as well. I say that Mohun Bagan are one of the title contenders because of the players that they have and they have also brought back Sony Norde," Kallon told Goal. 

He is confident that he can repeat his performance from last year and even better it. 

"I'm confident to do well this season as well. I want to better my performance. We had a good preseason. The Spanish coach (Manuel Retamero) is quite different. I learned a lot from Raikhan and I'm learning a lot from our new coach. For now, everything is going according to plan for the I-League. We are going to play a long league and I can tell you that we are one of the better sides with a lot of passion."

Bengaluru FC NEROCA FC Super Cup

Despite guiding NEROCA to the second spot in the league table, Gift Raikhan chose to leave the club at the end of the season. He spent close to three years with the Orange Brigade before he joined Aizawl FC a few months ago. But Kallon does not think that will affect the team's performance. 

"This is football. This happens. People come, people go. We are going to miss him, but it's not something that we are going to keep in our minds. We have to look ahead. One man is not the club," he explained.

The defender also chose to clear the air regarding confusions surrounding his age. 

"When I was coming to Asia, it was a rush and I really needed my passport in one week because the agent really wanted me to come. The year is the same, 1993, but the date should be April 29. While entering my details on the computer, they put April 24. I couldn't change it because I just needed to leave," stated Kallon.