India international Cavin Lobo is regarded by many as one of the most under-rated midfielders playing the beautiful game in the country. Anybody who has followed the 27-year-old's journey in the I-League with powerhouses Dempo and East Bengal will know his abilities.
Lobo lifted the ISL title in the inaugural edition of the tournament last year with Atletico de Kolkata, but this time, the midfielder wasn't retained by the ISL franchisee. Kerala Blasters acquired the player's prized signature prior to the start of the ISL this season.
The prospects of working with the highly-rated coach, Trevor James Morgan, was one of the reasons why Lobo decided to make the move. Morgan is currently the assistant coach of the ISL franchisee. Lobo started his career with the Red-and-Golds under the guidance of the English coach.
Lobo has made four appearances so far for Kerala Blasters, and already has a goal and an assist. His first goal this season came against NorthEast United FC in Guwahati on 15 November, as the Southern Indian side recorded a massive 4-1 victory.
Praised for his creativity and vision, the gifted playmaker also holds the distinction of being the first Indian player to score two goals in a single ISL match. Lobo created the record last season playing for ATK in a game against FC Goa. His performance in the ISL as well as the I-League last season gave enough food for thought to the national team selectors.
Lobo was soon handed his senior Indian team debut on 12 March this year in a 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifier against Nepal. He went on to bag a total of five caps, and also played a key part as India won their first qualifier against Guam in Bangalore last week.
Kerala Blasters are currently seventh in the ISL with 11 points, and have four games to go in the regular league season. It is for sure that Lobo's experience in the remaining matches will be key for the last year's finalists to make it to the playoff stage.
The Sachin Tendulkar co-owned side parted ways with head coach Peter Taylor mid-season, and Terry Phelan was roped in as the new head coach. Phelan seems to have found in Lobo a perfect fit in his plans; all eyes will be on the Goan midfielder as Kerala Blasters take on Chennaiyin FC in a huge game on 21 November.
Preparations are on for the hugh South Indian derby, and Lobo is certainly gearing up for the D-Day. He posted a video of himself showing some enthralling football freestyle skills.