Jorge Pereyra Diaz’s move to Mumbai City FC is already paying returns after his tangible impact in the Des Buckingham-led side. Following a spectacular debut season with Kerala Blasters FC, the Manjappada were confident of the forward signing a contract extension but the Islanders had other plans for the Argentine.

Stats and numbers might define a player but Diaz, being an ambitious player, wanted more for himself after spending his debut season with Kerala Blasters FC.

“For a long time – almost two or three months – I was under the impression that I would be returning to Kerala Blasters. But in the end, the club had other plans. It was a shock (to me), but that is football. After this, I had to weigh my options; I knew there were some offers from clubs in the Gulf and the Middle East, but I didn’t want me and my family to go through the process of settling in a new country, and a new team, again,” said Diaz in an interview to IFTWC

The attacker revealed that it didn’t take him much time to choose a new club as an offer from Mumbai City FC was lined up without any further ado and that it was a fitting option for him to continue his playing career in the same league.

“The very next day, I got the call from Mumbai City and it was a very easy decision to make. With the professionalism and the ambition that Mumbai City have, being a part of City Football Group, which has successful clubs all over the world, I knew I wanted to join Mumbai City as soon as they called me,” he added.

The Islanders have had a splurge in the transfer window after signing exceptional players like Greg Stewart, Alberto Noguera, Rostyn Griffiths alongside Jorge Pereyra Diaz who complements his team perfectly. Diaz wants to win everything with his new team and is already feeling at home.

“For me as a striker, I want to score more goals than last season. But more importantly, I want to win trophies. I know we are playing in a few competitions this season and I want to win everything we participate in, starting with the Durand Cup,” stated Diaz, on his objectives for this season with the Islanders.

“I haven’t had a single problem here in Mumbai City so far. The people at the club, the players and the staff are good. Everyone here has made me feel comfortable since day one. My teammates have been very helpful, too. They’ve welcomed me, they’re always there to help me and settling in with this bunch has been easy for me,” he added.

With an unbeaten start at the Durand Cup, the Islanders have been sailing smoothly in their group consisting of ATK Mohun Bagan, East Bengal, Rajasthan United, and Indian Navy. Having qualified for further stages of the tournament, the Islanders will need the experience of expertise of its top-notch players to keep their ship steady.

Diaz, who has fit in well with like-minded stars in the team, already has his name on the scoresheet after he cancelled out an ATK Mohun Bagan with an equaliser. And a striker like him can be the focal point for goals. 

“I feel very good. For a striker, it is always important to score goals for confidence. I am happy that I could help the team coming off the bench and I hope I can continue to get goals,” he added.

The 32-year-old also commented on the growth and development of Indian football over the past years and feels Indian teams are blooming and have the potential to compete at the highest level of football.

“I played in Malaysia six years ago, so I may not be fully aware of how Malaysian football is at the moment. But I can say that Indian teams and Indian footballers now can compete at the highest levels in Asia, be it Malaysia or anywhere.”

With football coming back to the home of MCFC, the Mumbai Football Arena, supporters will be back in numbers to cheer for not just Diaz but also Stewart, Noguera, and the rest of the crew. Diaz also sent out a special message for the fans.

“My message is that I will always give 100% to the team on and off the field and I will try my best to help the team win every competition that we play in. I hope to see the fans in Mumbai and I hope they will get behind us,” Diaz concluded.