Sarthak Golui: Hope I can achieve a lot with Mumbai City FC
Having already made 40 appearances in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL), Mumbai City FC’s Sathak Golui is among the most experienced U-23 players in the Hero ISL. After plying his trade for FC Pune City earlier, Golui made the switch to Mumbai City FC last season, and has enjoyed his first season at the club.
“It has been a great season with Mumbai City FC. When I first joined the club, they welcomed me very well. All the officials and players were very friendly to me. It didn’t feel like I was joining a new team. It was a great experience, and I hope I can achieve a lot more with the club,” Golui shared while in conversation with Anant Tyagi on Let’s Football Live. The stopper spoke about playing football while growing up and shared his emotions of the merger of ATK and Mohun Bagan, having started his professional career at the latter.
Starting Football and Father's influence
Golui has been vocal about the influence of his father, who was a footballer himself. Reiterating this fact, Golui said, “I started playing football for my father. He has always been supportive. It was his dream as well. I have told this before also, he has been a big inspiration for me. I started off with my father only, I was very small then, I used to play with my father and his friends. From there only I fell in love with playing football.”
Adding to this, Golui shared a few anecdotes from his childhood, “My father made a coaching on the ground in front of my house. It was mostly for me but it was like his dream as well for the local boys and help them support their dreams of playing football. He only told me to play as a centre-back because he was a defender as well. Every young aspiring footballer dreams of being a striker, even I did but he only asked me to play as a centre-back so that he could help me.”
Entering the Hero ISL with Pune City FC and the move to Mumbai City
Golui was a part of the erstwhile Mohun Bagan team before making the jump into the Hero ISL. He played for Pune City, making 27 appearances for them across two seasons. On his time at the club, Golui said, “Playing for Pune City was a different experience altogether. I had played in the Kolkata League and the I League but this was a different experience altogether. I was motivated and I wanted to give my 100%. I never expected that in my first year itself I would have gotten to play so many games. I am very thankful to Pradyumn Reddy sir and Ranko Popovic for giving me this opportunity. Ranko sir kept pushing me to get better.”
Although he fared quite well for the club, Golui decided to make the switch to Mumbai City in search of new pastures. “My contract with Pune City was expiring and I didn’t know what was going to happen. The owner of FC Pune City weren’t sure as well. I got the opportunity to play for Mumbai City FC. They showed a lot of trust in me that we need you. I thought that they could be my next team because their mentality and their game suited me. I didn’t think too much. I just thought that this is going to be good for me,” Golui said.
Injury and recovery last season
After a great start to his time in Mumbai, Golui established himself as a starter in Jorge Costa’s side from the beginning of the season. He was key in their fight for a semis spot but a knee injury after 13 games for Mumbai halted his run of form. On this, he opined, “The injury was heartbreaking for me. I remember we were going to play against Hyderabad. My season had been going well till then. Suddenly, it was an unexpected injury that took place during training. That time the team really needed me because they did not have a proper centre-back, and then only I got injured.”
Although the injury ruled him out for the rest of the season, Golui said he has fully recovered, and thanked his club’s medical team for their help, “I have been recovering, I am actually well-recovered by now, thanks to the staff in Mumbai. The phyios, my parents, everyone was very supportive. It was tough mentally, especially when you have been playing a season so well. But when you play you cannot think that you won’t get injured, and we cannot do anything about it. Now the objective to recover fast and return to the ground.”
Thoughts on ATK Mohun Bagan
Having joined the Hero ISL from Mohun Bagan, the merging of the club with ATK reminded Golui of the emotions he shared with the club as he wished them the very best for the future, “I want to wish a successful journey to all the ATK and Mohun Bagan supporters. I know them very well, I was part of the club for two years. I understand their emotion and their passion for football. It is a big thing for Indian football as well. It will be fun playing against them. I am excited to come back to Kolkata. I don’t know what is going to happen this year, but coming back to Kolkata and playing against my former club will be a difficult encounter.”