I want to make full use of this lock-down and come out stronger than before – Yash Vanveru

After an abrupt and controversial end to what was an excellent start for the Mumbai City Reserves, Defensive midfielder Yash Vanveru aims to leave past behind and come out stronger than before.

After an abrupt and controversial end to what was an excellent start for Mumbai City Reserves last season, Defensive midfielder Yash Vanveru aims to leave past behind and come out stronger than before.

At 21, Yash has already established himself as one of the top young defenders in the city with plenty of laurels already to his name in Mumbai including the nomination for the best defender award for MDFA Elite Division 2018-19 season. The young centre back, while playing for Air India previously, had won the Best defender title in 2017 when the club lifted MDFA Super Division. He further followed it with two runners-up finish with his club in the next two seasons of Elite Division (Mumbai’s top flight football).

Growing up, sports were embedded in young Yash as he played numerous sports for his school team, including Cricket and Long distance running. After his coach’s suggestion to try out football, Yash tried out as goalkeeper initially but switched to striker’s role and soon was hooked with the game.

Yash joined his first academy at Football school of India (FSI), where he met numerous national level players and it inspired Yash to take up the sport professionally. In 2017, Yash joined Air India U19 side and played in the MDFA Super Division (2nd tier of Mumbai Football). With solid defensive performance, Air India went onto win the title that year with Yash himself winning the ‘Best defender’ award for that season. Impressed by his performances, senior team coaches of Air India – Godfrey Pereira and Anthony Fernandes promoted Yash to main team roaster to play in Elite Division.

Talking about his time at Air India, Yash stated, “I didn’t get much game time during my first year in senior team. I was the youngest player & there were much experienced players in the team. But still I didn’t lose my determination. During my second year, our team played a practice match against Real Kashmir in the pre season where I did well and my coaches soon gave me starts.” Thereafter Yash played almost all the matches of MDFA Elite division that season & even went on to bag a nomination for the best defender award.

It came as no surprise that city based ISL outfit Mumbai City FC immediately went for the versatile defender for their reserve squad in 2nd Division I-League and MDFA Elite Div. Yash soon found his space into the squad as he went on to start for his team from the word go.

After an abrupt and controversial end to what was an excellent start for the Mumbai City Reserves, Defensive midfielder Yash Vanveru aims to leave past behind and come out stronger than before.

Talking about what he saw in Yash, Coach Mohan Das (Mumbai City FC Reserves) said, “When I was scouting for our Mumbai city FC reserve team, I saw positive attitude in Yash. He was playing as right centre defender for them, winning maximum balls & not shooting directly in certain situations. He was also tackling and in transition from defending to attacking quite well. He used to try build up from the back which shows player’s game reading ability.”

Coach Mohan continued to heap praise on Yash, further adding, “He is technically good with ball. He is also very hardworking and getting better in his tactical awareness and physical strength. He is always ready to work hard, learn and take new challenges. In addition he wants to win every game. He is versatile and can play in multiple positions. I hope to see him at top level soon”

The Islanders reserve side had a dream start to the season, however midway through the season the club was involved in an unnecessary controversy. A violent altercation broke out between few of the club’s player and Match officials, post Mumbai City’s game against KSA in MDFA Elite division encounter. The resulting inquiry saw club getting banned from playing any more league games for rest of the season with 10 other players getting longer bans too.

Talking about that incident, Yash adds, “I was very disappointed about the incident and the team as well, as it was not a professional behaviour. We as a team decided not to let such an incident happen again and the team management helped us a lot to move on.”

Talking about the recent Covid 19 pandemic and how he is dealing with dealing with it, Yash continues, “Even though I cannot train in the regular way, I still try to maintain my fitness at home. Our Mumbai city coaches and players get together on zoom meetings and our coaches suggest us with new exercises regularly which really help us to maintain our physique. Sometimes they try to keep it entertaining during lock-down by hosting fun quizzes, which is great.”

Like every footballer, Yash dream is to ultimately get into the national team. For that to happen, Yash has set goals for himself, “I have set my goals step by step. First I am looking forward to play I-league or even better ISL (Indian Super League) as it is best platform to showcase our talent and what we have got.”

Having left the disappointment of last season behind, Yash eagerly waits for the new football season to begin. “I want to give my best as there is no other way I can get into the national team. For that the only mantra that I am following is hard work without a day off. I want to make full use of this lock-down and come out stronger and fitter than before.”

Also Read: I have learned from my mistake – Rahul Das

For Trial related updates: Latest trials updates in Mumbai Football

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