Sat, Oct


26-year-old Nathaniel Jude Garcia is the third player from Trinidad & Tobago to feature for I-League club Gokulam Kerala this season. The other two are star striker Marcus Joseph and towering centre-back Andre Ettienne.

He has already made an impact for the Malabarians, scoring a goal against Bangladesh Premier League champions Bashundhara Kings in the Sheikh Kamal Cup 2019 last month. After spending several years in Trinidad and Tobago, Gokulam Kerala is a brave step for the forward. 

"I wanted to know if the place (Kerala) is friendly and comfortable to play football. Marcus is a friend of mine from a very young age, he told me that I can do well at Gokulam and they needed me," he told Goal.

"This season is very important for me. Once I perform, my name goes back home. Once I start scoring goals, I may get a call to the national team again," Garcia, who has featured for his national team in friendlies, added.

The Malabarians have assembled a strong squad for the 2019-20 season of the I-League after a mediocre first two seasons. They have started strongly this time around, winning the Durand Cup and also reaching the semi-final of the Sheikh Kamal Cup.

"It has been a very good experience so far. I expected to win (Sheikh Kamal Cup) because we were the favourites but football is a funny game. We win some, you lose some.

"I really do believe we can win the title this season. But the game is played on the day. We are very confident, we are training really hard and the team has bonded and gelled well. Everyone understands each other," he said. 

Garcia is expected to play a big part in the Malabarian journey to glory.