James Donachie – There is definitely a buzz about Indian Super League in Australia

In an exclusive chat with footballcounter, FC Goa’s Australian recruit James Donachie opens up about the A-League situation, his decision to join FC Goa and what he thinks of the ‘Don’ nickname from his teammates.

In an exclusive chat with footballcounter, FC Goa’s Australian recruit James Donachie opens up about the A-League situation, his decision to join Gaurs and what he thinks of the ‘Don’ nickname from his teammates.

FC Goa have been one of the Indian Super League teams who have always managed to form the most effective and impactful overseas player contingent in the six seasons of the ISL. The likes of Ferran ‘Coro’ Corominas, Hugo Boumous, Edu Bedia, Ahmed Jahouh and Mourtada Fall have been the cornerstones of the team in the past few seasons.

However, this season the side has seen a mass exodus of their key foreign players to Mumbai City FC and ‘Coro’ staying back in Spain, the team had to look for capable reinforcements to bolster their squad and continue to challenge for the ISL title.

Replacing one of the prominent figures at the back – Mourtada Fall, FC Goa has got on board 27-year old Australian defender James Donachie. An experienced A-League campaigner having started from the youth levels at Brisbane Roar, Donacie has won two titles with Brisbane after getting promoted to the senior squad. After his stint with the Roar, he was signed by Melbourne Victory in 2016, where he added another A-League title to his resume. 

In 2018, Donachie moved to South Korean side Jeonnam Dragons but was back with Melbourne Victory on loan and then rejoined them. In August this year, he signed with the Newcastle United Jets but quickly completed a one-year loan deal with FC Goa and has arrived on the shores of India for his second stint in an Asian league.

On his recent departure from the A-League, Donachie opined about moving to India due to the uncertainties about the league back home down under. “It was just the right timing for me, considering the situation in the A-League – with the pay rights and broadcaster issues. The ISL was moving in the right direction and tackled the COVID-19 problem brilliantly with the hub here in Goa.”

There has been an exodus of players from the A-League with a lot of ISL teams signing talented footballers from Down Under. Donachie asserts that ISL is an exciting prospect for players in Australia and that has led to the influx of players.

There is definitely a buzz about the league in Australia. I had a few players alongside me on the flight to India as well. The ISL has taken a lot of Australian players but it is for a good reason and the players are coming here to do well.

– James Donachie
Defender, FC Goa

Donachie has played in the AFC Champions League earlier and with FC Goa making the group stage for the first time in their history, he will be banked to deliver for them with his experience on the big stage. 

“It is a good competition to be a part of and FC Goa are the first Indian team to get into the group stage. I am really looking forward to competing in it and will help out on the pitch to my best ability. Of course, experience helps, but it is a team sport.”

Donachie credits the professionalism displayed by the FC Goa management as being one of the key reasons for his decision to come to the ISL. “I had a very fruitful conversation with FC Goa director Ravi Puskur and the professional approach of the management was a huge positive which convinced me to take the step at this stage of my career.”

The big Australian defender has been nicknamed as ‘The Don’ by the FC Goa media team. Donachie was delighted about it and spoke about the moniker. “The media manager told me about the Indian cult film (Don) and even sent me a voice-over video about it. I am just happy that it goes well with my last name and sounds very cool. Hopefully, it takes off and I do well, I might just keep it for the future.”

Donachie is currently undergoing quarantine and has brought his guitar to spend time at his hotel room and also brush up on some online studies to keep himself busy. The Australian will be a key cog for the FC Goa side this year as they compete for the ISL title as well as the AFC Champions League.

Also Read: Quarantine Diaries – Alexander Romario Jesuraj

Also Read: Gaurs launches the new Uzzo Jersey, the club’s official home kit for the 2020/21 season

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