IndianFootball.Com editor Trinanjan Sengupta was able to talk with Mohun Bagan's new signing Eduardo Chacon Coelho Lacerda on his past and the present. Eduardo talks about his life in Brazil, his time in Indonesia and the career in India.
Tell us about how you started your football life in Brazil?
I started lovable life when I was twelve years of age. I played for Kingsley in Brazil for nine years. Then I joined St.Joseph club in Brazil in 1999. Then I went to Tel Bates another club in Brazil. After ending my chapter in Brazil I went to Indonesia and joined a first division club - Doetras in Indonesia.
Tell us something about your motherland Brazil?
Ah! Brazil is a very nice country. Brazil is number one. Yeah. I used to live in Sao Paulo. My family is there. I have my father, my mother, two brothers and one sister.
What was the change that you felt when you came from Brazil to Indonesia?
There are many changes. I think in Brazil the climate is very nice. There are too many players in Brazil. Here I can take my professional carreer step by step. So it is easy.
Tell us something about your club in Indonesia?
It is very very nice. It is like here. Doetras is a first division club in Indonesia, it finished 7th in the table. I played as a sweeper over there. If my team wins a match in Indonesia, then each player gets $150.00 so this is different from India. Not a problem for me, I just want to get my salary every month.
Then in 2003 you came to India and joined HAL. So what was the main difference that you felt when you came from Indonesia to India?
Here everything is different because football is different. In Indonesia football is much faster. Every day there are two times practice - morning and evening. But here players think more than in Indonesia.
What is your general conception about HAL?
I am very happy because I've played in HAL. I have many many friends over there. The coach is very nice. I remember Goutam Ghosh. That guy speaks a little Portuguese. He is a very nice guy.
So now your saga at Mohun Bagan has begun. Tell us how you came to Mohun Bagan?
My friend Douglas, who is an East Bengal player, brought me to Mohun Bagan.
What was the main difference that you felt when you came from Bangalore to Calcutta?
The main difference is that there are too much traffic jams. Here when I take a car from my home to practice at Mohun Bagan ground, I get stuck on the road and it takes 40 mins to go to practice.
About Mohun Bagan: How is your feeling about the "national club of India"?
I am very happy with Bagan now. In Bangalore, there was only cricket over there. HAL did not have good supporters. But here, there are so many supporters, media, etc. Bangalore did not have all these. Here so many people love my football, I am very happy. I get my salary every month and enjoy my life here.
What do you have to say about your other team mates?
Basu (Basudeb Mondal) is a great footballer. He gives so many great passes. Dulal is very good. Noel, Tomba, Dharamjit also gives good passes. Mehraj and Palash gives me good support at the back. I feel Sunil Chetri should be in the national team. I don't know why the coach Stephen did not take him in. I really do not understand him.
Do you face any problems while playing in this slushy ground conditions?
Yeah. I faced some problems early on, but now it is ok.
The coach, Subrata Bhattacharya, uses you in a dual role, both as a defender and as a striker. Do you have any problems with that?
No, not at all. I love my job. I am a professional footballer, I will do anything for the good of my team. The coach is also very good. He is good to me, he is good to all footballers.
Coming to the great derby, what do you have to say about the Mohun Bagan and East Bengal rivalry?
Oh. This is great you know. When I entered the stadium on the match day, I saw so many supporters. I became amazed and thought what was going on. My heart was thumping loudly. This type of matches brings the best out of a footballer. It motivates you to give more than hundred percent. In Brazil, there are also such matches, but there are 7 or 8 such teams. Here it is only two teams.
How would you compare the football infrastructure in India and Indonesia?
Well, Indonesia is much more organized than in here. There are specific policies for each football match. India should take step by step and should go for more international matches - in this way India can improve their FIFA rankings.
So how is your life in Calcutta?
Life is good. I like the people, the place, the food. I like Paratha very much. But I don't like spicy food, because it is harmful for my stomach. I like the Barista in Park Street very much. I also see the Tantra and other discos, but I do not go there, because I love my girlfriend, who is now far away in Brazil. I plan to bring her over here in December. Here, I know the Inox cinema, but I don't see Indian movies, I see only English movies. Tom Cruise and Jennifer Lopez are my best bets.
So, is there any special memory that you want to remember for long?
Yeah there is. It was in Indonesia. I scored two goals in a tough match. Since I am a defender, I get no chance to score goals, so I am very happy to have scored two goals in that match. I also have another memory when I was in Kinglsey in Brazil. I scored two behind myself.
What is the message for the numerous fans spread all over the globe?
My club is like my life for me. I am very happy now, because my performance is coming now and supporters like my football now. I know Barreto is like a God in India. I also want to be like him. I thank the supporters for staying beside me.
Thank you Eduardo for the interview!
[ indianfootball.com interviews ]
© indianfootball.com 2004
Reproduction in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.