Odisha FC’s Jerry excited for the upcoming Hero ISL season under new coach Kiko Ramirez
Odisha FC winger Jerry Mawihmingthanga said the players have enjoyed the training sessions in pre-season under new head coach Kiko Ramirez, as he looks forward to the Hero ISL 2021-22 season.
Ramirez was appointed Odisha FC’s coach in July and the Spaniard comes with nearly extensive coaching experience, having managed in the top leagues of Poland and Greece apart from Spain’s lower divisions.
Odisha finished bottom of the table last season, with just 12 points from 20 games. However, with a new-look squad and a new coach in Ramirez, they would be hoping to put up a better show this time around. They began their pre-season camp in the first week of September in Goa, while also playing a few pre-season friendlies.
“It’s been really great with the new coach, and we’ve really enjoyed [it]. And as a team, we’re eagerly, eagerly waiting for the league to start”, Jerry said in an interview with the Indian Super League.
“Right now, in the camp, it’s really good. We have a good environment; we have good coaching staff, the backroom staff. And they have supported us. And even the players, we have a good mood, good environment in the camp, which is working well for us. And we are eagerly waiting for the league to start. We are working hard in the pre-season and giving the effort, and let’s hope this will give us a good result in the league.”
Odisha have made some big name signings this season adding former Hero ISL winners Javi Hernandez and Victor Mongil apart from the likes of Jonathas, Aridai Cabrera and Liridon Krasniqi. Jerry said the new players were gelling well to the squad.
“With the addition of the new players in the squad, they fit in well. They’re doing well in the pre-season. And I hope they are consistent in their form,” he said.
Odisha FC have a history of promoting young Indian talents and Jerry is a testament to that, having cemented his place as one of the best creative players in the Hero ISL in the past few seasons. Last season, the young Indian winger notched up two goals and five assists. His tally of five assists was also the most by an Indian player last season.
Hendry Antonay, Vinit Rai, Shubham Sarangi, Gaurav Bora are few of Odisha’s young Indian talents who have impressed so far and Jerry stated Odisha promoting young players was a big positive for the team.
“I believe it's to our advantage that Odisha [FC] has promoted young Indian promising talent in the squad. And that would help bring fresh legs. And even for the future, that will do good for Odisha FC,” he said.
“We will give our best and give everything for Odisha FC. And let’s hope we turn it to a positive way this season, and by the grace of God, let’s see where it takes us,” he added.
The Bhubaneshwar-based side will open the campaign against Bengaluru FC on 24th November. And if they can cement some consistency throughout the season, they could be a force to reckon with.