With an annual salary of more than a crore, Gouramangi Singh was the second-highest paid Indian footballer after Bhaichung Bhutia at the peak of his performance graph. At the age of 32, Singh is still going strong and after a successful season with NEROCA in the latest edition of I-League where he formed a good partnership with Varney Kallon, he is looking for a second lease of life to his career.
"I am not hanging up my boots any time soon. I am going to be in the circuit for the next few years. Bob (Houghton) used to say that play as long as you can. Once you are done you can never get back. I enjoyed playing with NEROCA this season where I turned up in 12 matches after missing the initial matches. So I want to continue next season as well," said Singh to Goal.
The former India international confirmed that he will not be continuing with NEROCA and wants to make a comeback in the Indian Super League (ISL) next season. In the inaugural edition of ISL, Singh was signed by Chennaiyin FC following which he also played at FC Pune City.
"I have not yet decided my destination for next season. I am not trying to prove anything to anyone. I will play because I still enjoy the aspects of winning and losing and being part of a dressing room. It will be best if a move into the ISL materialises. I am not looking for money but yes the financial aspect is important. So in the next three-four weeks, I hope to come up with a definite answer," said Gournamangi on his immediate future.
He holds an AFC B-License coaching degree and wants to learn the trade hands on. Singh, along with I-League winning coach Khogen Singh, is overseeing a football summer camp which is scheduled to start from June 4 in Imphal.
"Kago is more like a summer camp where kids will come and just play football. Baby League is going to start in Manipur from next month and we are eager to send one of our teams to that league. I am thankful to Khogen for helping me out in this project. Working with Khogen will also help me learn the nuances of the job. Apart from him, we are going to have other professional coaches as well who will be supervising three-four training sessions a week on a long-term basis.
"With the world cup coming up, we are trying to make it a football carnival as we will also have a giant screen to view games," informed Singh.
Although he wants to prolong his playing career by a few more years the AFC Challenge Cup winner made it clear that he has his eyes set on pursuing an A-License course as well.
"It is always difficult when you get engaged with a club. I am keeping a track on the licensing schedules in India. I will definitely give it a go if time permits. But for the next few years, I just want to concentrate on being a player," signed off Singh.