Vishal Joon was one of the standout performers in Rajasthan United’s promotion push for the Hero I-League. The goalkeeper kept three straight clean sheets in the final round of Hero I-League Qualifiers last year to seal his side’s first-ever promotion.
As the Hero I-League restarts after a gap of two months, Joon feels Rajasthan have utilised their time well. “The break has been a blessing in disguise for us as it has given us more time to better prepare for the league and for the new signings to gel with the squad.”
This is Joon’s first year in the Hero I-League and the 26-year-old is determined to grab this opportunity with both hands and add value to Rajasthan United. “We are very confident that the team will be able to put out competitive performances in the league. The management has given us the freedom to go and express ourselves, however we cannot take things lightly as we are representing the state of Rajasthan,” said Joon.
Joon actually started playing football as a striker in Haryana but later switched to become a custodian. “During practice matches, no player wanted to be a goalkeeper and as a striker I didn’t get much chances to play. So I picked up the gloves and it all started from there,” he stated.
Rajasthan have roped in former Barcelona academy coach Francesc Bonet for the season. “Coach Bonet always has our backs and gives us freedom when we are on the pitch. One thing which I like about him is that he’s very demanding during training sessions. As a goalkeeper I like to get more involved in the game and that’s what he encourages me to do,” said Joon, whose favourite goalkeeper is Bonet’s countryman Iker Casillas.
While Joon will be hoping to earn his big break in his debut season at this level, he firmly believes that the achievements of the team matter more than those of any individual in a team sport like football. “We go out and target three points in every match, irrespective of the opponents. We’ve got some experienced players in the team such as Abhishek Ambekar, Pedro Manzi and Shilton D’Silva who are Hero I-League regulars and they share a lot of insights,” he added.
For the first time, Rajasthan United FC, an I-league club will be conducting residential scholarship trials in Nagaland at Kohima and Dimapur in support with the Kohima Town Club.
The club will be scouting the young players from the age group of U-10, U-13, U-15 and U-19. The trials will start from Dimapur on February 28 at DDSC ground, from 9 AM to 4 PM, while in Kohima on March 1 from 9 AM to 4 PM at Indira Gandhi Stadium, Kohima.
The club stated in a press release that trials aimed to scout best talent players from Nagaland and nurture it through club’s residential football program while also build strong team and second-line string for vacancies/reserves in the team.
The interested players can register by submitting documents such as date of birth certificate, aadhaar card, passport size photo (2 nos) , negative Covid-19 rtpcr report and registration fee of Rs 199 per player.
For registration, you can contact Daniel 8119818928 or Mhasi 9436609321 for Kohima, and for Dimapur to Olando 8414999749/Ayeto 9436424654.
Its worthy to note that Rajasthan United FC is a full-fledged football residential Academy/club that created history by winning the Hero I-League qualifiers 2021 and become the first team from the state of Rajasthan to participate in the Hero I-League. Apart from a Hero I-League, the club also have youth teams category from U-13, U-15 and U-18 to the senior team.