India's first-choice goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh yesterday expressed confidence that the hard work he has put in and the sacrifices he made will be rewarded in the form of impressive performances in the FIFA U-17 World Cup.
The Manipuri boy is excited to be a part of India's World Cup team. "All my days of sacrifice and hard work will be rewarded and I am very much excited to be a part of the Indian team," he said. Dheeraj, who hails from Moirang in Bishnupur district, said he prefers to strike a balance between aggressive goalkeeping and composed goalkeeping.
"You have to pick your moments and chose what type of goalkeeping will suit the moment. Sometimes the aggressive goalkeeping can lead to difficulties and even conceding a goal whereas composed goalkeeping could work and vice versa. For a goalkeeper, both ways of goalkeeping are important."
Asked how tough is a goalkeeper's job, he said, "Staying in the moment is the job of a goalkeeper and lack of focus can easily lead to a goal. Goalkeepers are the last barriers and it makes the job all the more tough when there is a pressure of performing in every single game."
India will be up against some of the top teams in the world, but Dheeraj is prepared for the challenge. "It is a challenge that I am prepared for. As a goalkeeper it is my job to be the hardest barrier the opponents face."