AFC Champions League campaign has been a huge learning experience: Mumbai City FC's Rahul Bheke
Mumbai City FC defender Rahul Bheke enjoyed a magical moment with his match-winner in game 2 of the AFC Champions League against Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya and created history as he became the first Indian goalscorer in the tournament, and to add to it, the Islanders became the first Indian club to emerge victorious in the Asian continental competition.
Ahead of the club's final showdown in the group stage, Bheke shared a unique message to the Indian fans and media for being supportive of the club. The 31-year-old is keen to sign woff with another win against Iraqi side Al-Quwa Al-Juwiya (Air Force Club) at the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Wednesday.
The defender addressed the media during the official pre-match press conference.
Here are the excerpts from the player's press conference:
How prepared are you to play the final game of the competition on Wednesday?
Bheke: It’s an important game for us and we definitely want to finish the game with a win so that we finish in second position. We’ll do our best and get that win on Wednesday.
Ahead of @MumbaiCityFC's clash against Al Jazira, relive @RahulBheke's historic goal 🆚 Air Force Club on loop! ⚽♾️— Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) April 14, 2022
Catch #TheIslanders in action on @StarSportsIndia, @DisneyplusHSVIP and @OfficialJioTV! 📺#AFCvMUM #AFC2022 #MumbaiCityFC #RahulBheke #IslandersInAsia pic.twitter.com/QMUzLu8oob
Apart from creating history at this competition, what is it that you will take from this competition?
Bheke: As I said, it’s a huge learning experience for me. At this stage, where we are getting to play against the top football players in Asia, so obviously, it’s a good experience and I will definitely take this forward to my next season. This experience will surely help each and every player.
The media have a positive opinion about your performances. What is your message to the Indian media and people about your team on the last matches and the upcoming matches in the future?
Bheke: Yes, it’s a disappointing result in the last game but we will try to learn from that game and make sure we do well in our next game which is our last game here. My message to all the Indian media is that the team has done really well and each and every player in the team had a learning experience playing here.
This will definitely help the youngsters who are in the team and obviously it will help our team to prepare for next season also. And surely, the teams and the players who are watching there, it’s a big motivation or inspiration. I believe they can see the Indian players doing really well at this stage, so it’s also possible for them to do well here and achieve their targets.