Onwards and Upwards: Igor Angulo ready to give his everything to achieve glory with MCFC
Igor Angulo, who shined in his debut season by bagging the Golden Boot last season, has signed a one-year contract with defending Hero ISL League Winners and Cup Champions, Mumbai City FC.
Ahead of the Hero ISL 2021-22 Season, indiansuperleague.com caught up with Igor Angulo for an exclusive interview, here what he had to say.
The Spaniard found the back of the net 14 times in the previous season for the Gaurs. Ahead of the upcoming pre-season friendlies and the Hero ISL 2021-22 season, Igor has already hit the ground running in the MCFC camp.
“The training sessions have been looking good. We’re looking forward to playing our pre-season friendlies because it gets us [players] going. Everyone is eagerly waiting to play the pre-season friendly against Hyderabad FC on Sunday.”
Igor commenced his footballing career with the Spanish club Athletic Bilbao. After gaining experience in several European leagues, Igor tasted success at the Polish club Gornik Zabrze by netting 88 goals in 154 appearances. The 37-year-old was one of the crucial players for FC Goa, making it to the playoffs in the previous season.
“As I said last year, I don’t have a particular individual target. If there has to be one, it is to help the team as much as I can. The most important objective is always the team [goal], to win the trophy and the shield,” he stated on his objectives for this season.
The Hero ISL 2020-21 season witnessed an intense Golden Boot race. Igor edged out ATK Mohun Bagan’s Roy Krishna with a lesser minutes-per-goal ratio (1,645) as they both were tied at 14 goals each.
“Mumbai City FC are a fantastic club. Last season, they were fantastic. They won everything. I aim to be at one club and win all there is to win, I wish the same with Mumbai. I hope the outcome for this club is the same as the previous season, to win everything.”
The Islanders replaced former coach Sergio Lobera with the English coach Des Buckingham, as the former stepped down from his position as head coach to work with City Football Group. The Englishman, on the other hand, won the A-League double as an assistant coach with Melbourne City FC last season.
“The motivation here is to work harder than last year because to win is difficult but to be consistent [in winning] is even more difficult. We know the opponents are going to be prepared to play against us, but we have to keep [the momentum] going like last year.”
“We are a different side, with a unique style of play, and experienced coaching and staff. The target is to win each game and to be successful in doing so,” Igor commented on training under MCFC coach Buckingham.
Last season, MCFC became the first team to win the League Winners’ Shield as well as the ISL trophy in ISL history. In what was their first-ever silverware in the ISL, the Islanders will be looking to defend the title.
“It’s different this time because everybody knows us, this time they [opponents] will come well prepared. This time, we have a good squad depth, we have experienced foreign and Indian players and a potential youth. This squad is going to be better than last year. We’re ready for the season to begin,” Igor stated on how they can achieve the same feat this time.
Igor believes in making a difference in the squad. The professional footballing experience of Igor will be a key learning point for the young players of MCFC.
“I hope I’m able to teach and improve the young players’ game. I expect to share a good relationship with them off the pitch too.” Igor also quoted on the massive experience the young players are getting by playing in the ISL.
The former Gaurs’ striker went on to acknowledge his affection for FC Goa, his former teammates, and the fans. He apprised that he still is in contact with his Gaurs’ teammates and fans through various social media platforms.
“I’m an experienced player and will always be wanting more. I have some affection towards FC Goa but now I’m in MCFC, to achieve everything. Everything is important for us, especially the first game as we’ll be looking forward to keeping those three points,” added Igor on his connection with FC Goa, and facing them in his first-ever game for MCFC.
The reigning champions will travel to the Fatorda stadium to kick-off their 2021-22 campaign against FC Goa on November 22.