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Football through the feet of Jessel Carneiro


In football there are players who know how to be at the right place, at the right time. Jessel Carneiro of Dempo Sports Club is one of them except that he is not playing in the right league. At 28 , he is clearly one of the best players in the Goa Football Association (GFA) Professional league – Victorino Fernandes of Sporting Clube de Goa is the other – and the duo are bidding their time ,entertaining  through football of another level.

Jessel Carneiro is Roque’s son, a former Salgaocar defender- an eccentric player in his time. His son Jessel is one of those few players who are keeping local’s interest in football alive.

Jessel is supposed to be a defender but he plays all over the field and is the live wire of Dempo Sports Club. He plays with unassuming ease in the midfield, tears through rival defences ,through the flanks and carries himself to the centre; makes place to shoot and has an excellent shot at goal.

“A good player is one who fits in any position,” former Salgaocar Sports Club coach Shanmaughan had once said and that is why Jessel fits the definition of a good player. Jessel as defender has numerous tackles to his credits; numerous passes and four goals in the nine league games. If Dempo is the team having scored the highest number of goals in the Professional league it is primarily because of his role.

Eleven players make a team. Jessel is just one but he is the one who is the live wire of his team. Remove Jessel out and the story- not just his teams but of Pro league 2018-19 could be different.

Jessel starts in the defense and after sizing his opponents slowly moves to the center. It is here that his mind gets into a flurry and Jessel become unpredictable and unpredictability is the keystone of football. He is a good reader of the game; makes open spaces for him to receive the ball and can run through defences not just with speed but his ability to dribble past the best defenders. When he starts running the question is how to stop him. Few can.

Intelligence defines players differently. Jessel is intelligent on the ball and his thinking and ability to control the game on the flanks  makes one wonder how he would perform if he is brought from the defense to the center of the midfield.  Jessel could be one of those masters who could tame others with his game plans. He could change the dynamics of his team. A good defender can be a better midfielder.

Jessel as a defender has a shot a striker is expected to have.  There are times when he balloons over but most times he knows to choose his shot and knows whether to shoot or to pass it to a player who is better placed.

Dribbling is something that Jessel is adept with. He dribbles on the run; he dribbles on the spot; and he dribbles in one to one situations, emerging the winner, most times.

Jessel Carneiro , as mentioned earlier , is one player capable of being at the right place ,at the right time. However, seeing him play, he gives the impression he is playing in the wrong league for Jessel is clearly cut to be amongst the best players in the country today.

“ I wish to one day break through the ISL. I have tried before and have not succeeded. Sometimes I feel let down. But being hurt is not going to help me be a better player. I enjoy playing football and whether it is ISL or I-League or our own professional league, I will keep enjoying playing because football makes me happy,” Jessel once said.

Football is a game that plays on emotions and at the moment these are happy times for Jessel and all those following football through the feet of Jessel Carneiro.

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