IndianFootball.Com - Roberto BETO Mendes Silva - Dempo SC

IndianFootball.Com Interview


Roberto Mendes Silva, better known as BETO, is one of the most successful foreigners in the Indian football scene. The Brazilian jogador has made a great impact in India, while playing in Calcutta and Goa.
IndianFootball.Com Founder & Editor-in-Chief Arunava Chaudhuri had the chance to speak to Beto about his playing career in India and his views on the domestic game.


Arunava: Congratulations for having made a good start into the I-League!
Dempo had problems in the Federation Cup and Durand Cup early in the season. But then you and your teammates were back at your best for the I-League. Any explanation for that?

Beto: Thanks. I guess that we were not prepared for all the difficulties that we would find, after winning the National League.

Arunava: What are the aims with Dempo for the I-League?

Beto: I believe that we have a experienced team, and if we use those experiences on the ground we could be victorious again. We shoud be united as a team!

Arunava: Many say Dempo’s biggest strength is its team spirit. Would you agree?

Beto: Yes I agree, because in football today you have to play with quality, but the most important thing is to have a team that is committed to fight to be winners.

Arunava: You played for Mohun Bagan in Calcutta and now for Dempo SC in Goa. What is the difference between Calcutta and Goa? Where do you prefer to play?

Beto: The difference is that in Goa, they give us time for playing the best in us, and in Calcutta unfortunatelly thay don't have this vision.

Arunava: When you first came to India you played as a striker for Mohun Bagan. Now you play as playmaker for Dempo. Which position do you prefer?

Beto: In India I prefer to play as a playmaker, if i was in Brazil, i would like to play as striker.

Arunava: You now have been playing over three years in India. Has Indian football improved while you have been playing here? How would you rate the standard of Indian football?

Beto: Surely Indian football improved. Specialy Indian players improved as well, they are getting international exposure and it have been showing in the National League. I think that the Indian players have a lots of talent, and what they really need is more structure and system.

Arunava: Who do you think are the best Indian players? The best goalkeeper? The best defender? The best midfielder? The best striker? Has any of the Indian players the capabilities to play abroad?

Beto: Subrata Pal as goalkeeper, Mahesh Gawli as defender, Climax Lawrence as midfielder, Ashim Biswas as striker (if he is not injured)... This four surely can play abroad and we have also players with high quality like Sunil Chetri, Alvito D'Cunha, Surkumar Singh, Renedy Singh, Robert Lalthalma (Churchil left back)

Arunava: If you could change one thing about Indian football what would it be?

Beto: I couldn't say change, but we have to fulfill all the areas of Indian football to get better day by day.

Arunava: Dempo SC will this year once more play in the AFC Cup? What are the aims for the AFC Cup this time around?

Beto: Well, like most of the Brazilians when playing, I would like to be a champion, even that my chances is lower then others. I believe, I dream, I will work very hard to achieve this.

Arunava: Tell us a little about the private Roberto Mendes Silva. About your family, your likings.

Beto: I am married with Alini and I have two daughters Gabrieli and Julia they are my gift from GOD (In my free times I like to listen gospel music and read the Bible and that make me very peaceful).

Arunava: Like many Brazilian players you have short form of your name. You are called Beto. How did it come about that you where called Beto?

Beto: It is common in Brazil that you are called by a short name, My name is Roberto and when i was young my family start to call me "Beto" then Beto took the place of Roberto. Today even my mother calls me Beto.

Arunava: What do you think about IndianFootball.Com?

Beto: It is really important for Indian football and not only for Indians but also for those who are in other countries to follow football in India like my friends and family!

Arunava: Thank you for talking to us at IndianFootball.Com!

the interview was conducted by Arunava Chaudhuri (February 2008)

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