FC Goa’s Technical Director Derrick Pereira believes Reliance Foundation Development League (RFDL) is a good initiative and an important step forward towards the development of Indian football.

Pereira who was the head coach of FC Goa in Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-22 after the departure of Juan Ferrando felt playing in RFDL will help players improve their decision-making on the pitch.

“It is a very good initiative by Reliance, in order to get all the reserve players together and it is a process of development," he said in an interaction with the RFDL media team.

"Overall, the performance of the players was important, when you play a different level of football, players get to understand what to expect during a game. There are different types of teams, which are playing different styles, so you get adapted to it. The decision-making improves and an overall development takes place when you play tournaments like RFDL. So, we need more of such tournaments," he added.

The 60-year-old joined FC Goa in 2017 and since then has worked on the developing the youth in the role of a technical director.

Pereira also expressed that tournament like RFDL is not just important for players but also for the coaches.

“We always look at the development side of the players and coaches. This will help us in analyzing our performances, throughout the season, individual players' performances, and also the coaches." he said.

"What work do we put in, where and how we can improve our work. So there are a lot of things which we have learned in this tournament, and it was good. Matches were played in the morning, as well as in the evening it was quite good," he added. 

FC Goa had a good outing in the RFDL as they finished in third place behind Bengaluru FC and Kerala Blasters FC. Pereira was pleased with the performance given the team had to juggle between the RFDL and the Goa Pro league.

"There were three days gap in between. One difficult part for us was that we had to play the Goa Pro League as well, so we had to manage both the tournaments at the same time. But it did not affect, our performance, we focused on this tournament more than the local tournament, is because we knew the competition would be tougher here. So we had our best players in this league, and it will definitely help us to understand where we stand,” he said.

On being asked about the significance of the top two teams from RFDL getting a chance to play against the Premier League Academy teams, he said, “Again my answer would be the same thing and when you play at the highest level, I mean, playing against the best will help our boys. They will understand where we stand and where we need to work on it. So, for sure, this will help Indian football.”