ISL team Chennaiyin FC’s new signing Lallianzuala Chhangte, who is part of the Indian football team take on Bangladesh in the Fifa World Cup qualifier in Kolkata on Tuesday, is all praise for national coach Igor Stimac and said he was bringing out “the best out of all of us.”
“He is a great coach and understands players very well. He has ensured there is a lot of competition between the players so that everyone focuses and no one gets a place for free.
If you do great on the training ground, no matter how old or young you are, you will play. He is bringing the best out of all of us,” Chhnagte was quoted as saying by ISL media.
He said holding a strong Qatar to a draw in a recent World Cup qualifier and earning a point was memorable.
“It was a fantastic result for the team and brought great joy to the country. I am a team player and so the priority is getting the results no matter who plays. As an individual, I want to keep working hard and improve every day.
The Qatar result and performance has been a big lift for everyone, but we are focused now on performing well and winning against Bangladesh,” Chhangte, who moved to Chennaiyin FC from Delhi Dynamos, said.
The 22-year old from Mizoram is back in India after trying his luck in Europe and is solely focused on guiding Chennaiyin FC back to the top of the ISL.
Asked why he chose CFC, the highly-rated Chhangte said he felt it would be the best for him and the coach (John Gregory) had called him and spoken about his future plans.
“I felt the move would be the best for me. They showed much more interest than other clubs, they made me feel cherished. The coach even called and told me about his future plans. He is willing to help in my development and I am very grateful to the club,” he added.
Chhangte had had trials with Norwegian club Viking FC, twice, which he termed a great experience and said currently his focus was with Chennaiyin FC and to help them win back the ISL.
“It was a great experience for me in Norway with Viking FC. Currently my focus is with Chennaiyin FC and to help them win back the Indian Super League title.
“As a player, I still aspire to play in Europe one day, but right now I just want to focus on training hard and performing for club and country,” he added.
Chhangte said despite CFC not performing well last season, he believed the team will do well in the new season and had the quality to do so.
“They didn’t do well last year, but that is already in the past. We have new additions and the condition of the squad is nice. The staff is so humble, and I really like working with them.
“Most importantly, we have a coach who has already won the title and is pushing to bring the club back to the top, where the club deserves to be. That is what we are trying to do this year. There is no doubt that we have the quality to achieve that.
Chhangte also said he had become the player he was due to Delhi Dynamos.
He said after making his India debut in 2015 when he was quite young was a great experience and despite the ups and downs, he had remained positive.
“It was a great experience for me to score on debut and then win the Saff Championship in 2015. Since then, there have been ups and downs, and over the years I have learned to remain positive and keep working hard,” the CFC player added.
The midfielder is part of the national squad for the Bangladesh tie along with another CFC player Anirudh Thapa.
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