When the owner of a club like Bengaluru FC, who are serial trophy-winners, says that he would do everything in his power to sign Sahal Abdul Samad, it means the player has done a lot of things right on and off the field.
Off the field, Sahal is humble and soft-spoken with a charming smile almost always etched on his lips. He wasn’t overwhelmed with the attention he has been getting in recent years but is really glad to be in the position that is finding himself in right now.
A few weeks ago, during an Instagram live conversation, Bengaluru owner Parth Jindal had said , “Sahal (Samad) is one player I would pay money for. He is my favourite player. I would do anything to bring him to Bengaluru FC but Kerala Blasters (aren’t going to allow that). He is an incredible talent. Imagine Sahal, (Sunil) Chhetri, Ashique (Kuruniyan) and Udanta (Singh) (together at Bengaluru FC).”
Amidst all the headlines in the media about the long-term deal that the 23-year-old signed, Sahal is a relaxed man staying at home, focused on his training and diet instructions assigned to him by the coaching staff.
“The world is facing a really difficult situation. We have restrictions but that has helped me regain focus and prepare for the upcoming season like any other player.
“I train regularly so that I can be ready for when the camp begins. I have also been working on my fitness and diet,” Sahal said.
And as and when the camp begins, he will be meeting the new head coach Kibu Vicuna in person for the first time. The Spaniard has been talking to the player every week via online calls and has already stated his opinion that Sahal is one of the best players in the country.
“I am impressed with Sahal, he is a fantastic player. He is one of the best Indian players I have seen,” Kibu had said in May.
“Kibu is a coach with lots of experience helping young players. He supports his players and I am excited to play under him. He has got the right tactics to lead the team. I hope I can adapt and fit into his style of play.”
Sahal is certainly more hopeful of getting regular first-team action next season after a not-so-impressive last campaign where he found regular game time hard to come by under Eelco Schattorie.
The team’s poster boy would want to show that he is back to his best and that he is capable of bringing success to Kerala Blasters.