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ISL 2018-19: FC Goa's Hugo Boumous - I could play for many years in India

11:08 AM MYT 26/09/2018
Hugo Boumous FC Goa ISL 4
The 23-year-old attacking player admitted that he may play in India for years to come...

Hugo Boumous joined FC Goa at the age of 22 - which is relatively young for an overseas player to ply their trade in the Indian Super League (ISL).

However, the Moroccan feels that he made the switch to India at the right phase of his career with the presence of Sergio Lobera proving to be the most influential factor in the FC Goa dugout.

"The decision to come to India was taken because I knew the coach (Sergio Lobera) very well," Boumous told Goal in an exclusive chat. 

"I didn't really think (contemplate) whether to come or not. I came and I think it was the right decision because everything is good here. Even though I'm not very old, I think this league is developing. So I am very happy and why not? I will stay in India for many years," he added.

The French-born midfielder went on to admit that his style of play matched Lobera's philosophy which helped him play without constraints. 

"I met him (Lobera) two years ago when I signed for my last team (Moghreb Tetouan) in Morocco. We shared the same vision of football, the same Spanish style with a lot of positioning and passing. He gave me this confidence so when I play with him, I have a lot of liberty on the pitch. Personally, he is someone who is big at heart and lets his players play their own football," Boumous mentioned. 

FC Goa finished third in the league stage in the last ISL term having scored the highest number of goals (42) scored by the Gaurs but also ended up conceding as many as 28 times. The team struggled to keep more than two clean sheets in the entire season.

"We were strong and ready to win the title last year but we didn't. In fact, we lost against a strong team Chennaiyin (FC in the semi-finals)," Boumous assessed.

"I think this year it will be possible if we improve our defence, keep a lot of clean sheets and continue attacking the way we did despite losing (Manuel) Lanzarote (to ATK). The new player to replace him, Miguel Palanca, is a very good player. So I think we have the team to be the best in the ISL and win the title," he stated.

He also professed his admiration for several Indian players. 

"The level of Indian players is very good. They are very good physically and technically. In ISL you have very good Indian players like Sunil Chhetri or the striker of Chennai also, Jeje (Lalpekhlua)," Boumous continued.

"In our team also we have got very good players like Mandar (Rao Dessai), Seriton (Fernandes), Lenny (Rodrigues), Brandon (Fernandes) and other young players. All the Indian players in our team has adapted to the style of our coach and this is very important. This is why I think we were very strong last season and we will be also this season," he stressed.