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Lalengmawia: FC Goa was the most difficult opponent in ISL

05:04 BST 10/09/2020
The midfielder thinks FC Goa's style of play makes them one of the most difficult sides to play against...

FC Goa have been one of the most difficult teams to beat under Sergio Lobera's tutelage in the Indian Super League (ISL). 

With three play-off appearances, one final appearance and playing an important role in the club winning the Indian Super League (ISL) shield, Lobera's legacy at FC Goa is nothing short of exemplary.

During his period, Goa won the most games in the league and also accumulated the most number of points. 

No wonder, Lalengmawia, the dynamic midfielder of NorthEast United, chose FC Goa when asked about the most difficult opponent he has played against in the ISL. 

"No doubt it is FC Goa. They are so good with the ball. They will not give you easy possession. We have to chase a lot. They do not give you much time to close down and you have to put your best foot forward every time you go up against them," stated the player to Goal. 

But the 19-year-old relishes playing against the Gaurs as he enjoys going up against opponents that push his limits. 

"I like these challenges. It motivates me even more. They are human and so am I. I always think like this. It is important to play against tough opponents as it helps you better your game."

The teenager has also been fortunate to share the same dressing room with Asamoah Gyan, the former Ghana captain, who led the African nation in the 2010 World Cup. 

Gyan's inspired form helped Ghana reach the knock out stage of the tournament. In the Round of 16, he scored the winning goal against the United States of America in extra time to fire his country to the quarter-finals, where they were beaten by Uruguay in tie-breakers. In the 2014 World Cup, his strike against Germany in a 2-2 draw helped him equal Roger Milla's record of five goals in a World Cup.

Lalengmawia was enthralled by his character and persona. He believes that training with the Ghanaian superstar was the best thing to happen to him after joining NorthEast. 

"It was great to play with Gyan. Not only he is one of the best strikers but he is a great teacher as well. He helped me with my positioning and decision making. His work ethic is so exemplary. His finishing techniques in training used to amuse me. He is a great, great player," said the Mizo midfielder.

The youngster cannot wait to get back on the pitch to train and prepare for the upcoming season under new coach Gerard Nus. In the previous season, the HIghlanders could not play to their potential but he hopes that the tables will turn in ISL 7. And the U17 World Cup participant is ready to shoulder more responsibility.