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The rise of Glan Martins: How the FC Goa midfielder dealt with his national team debut and pressure of expectations?

05:20 BST 17/07/2021
Glan Martins, FC Goa vs Al-Rayyan, AFC Champions League
The 27-year-old who recently signed a fresh three-year deal with FC Goa feels that the 3+1 foreigner rule in the ISL won't affect the Gaurs...

Glan Martins made his Indian national team debut against Asian champions Qatar in the June 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup joint qualification games.

It was not long before that the Goan made his first appearance in the AFC Champions League (ACL) with FC Goa, with whom he recently extended his stay for another three years until 2024.

In fact, Glan has gone from plying his trade in the Goa Pro League with Sporting Clube de Goa until 2019 to representing Churchill Brothers in the I-League in the same year, to making his ISL debut with ATK Mohun Bagan in 2020, to becoming a regular starter at FC Goa since joining the Goan side in the January transfer window of the 2020-21 Indian Super League (ISL) season.

What did Glan Martins say about his debut?

The Sesa Football Academy product admitted that he was elated after discovering that India coach Igor Stimac named him in the starting line-up against Qatar. But he also knew what to expect and was not nervous. 

"I was very happy when I came to know that I will start against Qatar. At the same time, I was not nervous as I have already played in the ACL. It's difficult, the pace of the game is very fast, you don't get much time on the ball. You have to be quick. So playing in the ACL gave me the confidence to do well with the national team. The coach's belief in me also helped me a lot," he mentioned.

Giving his view on the new 3+1 foreigner rule in the ISL, Martins stated, "We (FC Goa) have already played with that rule in the ACL and we have already done a very good job. So I don't think it will affect the gameplay or anything like that."

What does Glan Martins bring to FC Goa?

"Since I moved to FC Goa in the second half of the season, everything changed for me. Right from my lifestyle to learning so much more. Secondly, I got to play a lot of games. I started almost all games with FC Goa and I want to continue working hard to find my place in the 11 and be available to the coach whenever he needs me," he said.

Glan boasts of a passing accuracy of 76.44% with an average of 30 passes in the ISL, having recorded nearly 600 passes in 15 appearances to make the midfield tick for Goa, while putting in 66 tackles, 16 interceptions and 21 clearances.

Was this a one-off season for Glan Martins?

Having made the steep rise in a short span of time, living up to the expectations of his performances of last season is not something that worries Glan. He is up for the challenge, having worked with experienced players.

"I never like to take pressure. I just work hard in training and implement the same during the game. That's what makes it easier for me. Playing in the I-League, ISL, ACL and national team, I got to learn a lot things from a lot of players. At the national team, from guys like Sunil Chhetri, Sandesh (Jhingan), Rowllin (Borges), at FC Goa there were Edu (Bedia) and Alberto (Noguera) who supported me a lot and always helped me on the things I needed to work on," said Martins.


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