Jewel Raja Shaikh has experienced achievement early on in his professional footballing career. Shaikh currently plays for South United FC in the I-League second division.
Shaikh ‘s outstanding exploits with Dempo SC gained him a spot in the Indian U-23 national team when he was still a teenager.
Jewel began his senior career in 2008 with Dempo SC and captured the I-League in only his second season. He made his senior national team debut at the age of 21 years.
Jewel rejoined Dempo after spending two seasons with Mohun Bagan scoring 4 goals in 16 appearances.
At Pune City, he had a tough start to his career. He picked up an injury just before the 2017-18 ISL season. He made only 6 appearances blaming head coach Ranko Popovic of not giving him enough playing time.
Shaikh on Ranko Popovic:
“I had picked up a groin injury in the very first match of the season against Delhi Dynamos but it wasn’t serious. The injury happened during warm-up. I came back after 20 days and had even played a match against FC Goa,
“The coach had problems with me after I got injured. He had asked me to continue with upper body exercises after the injury but the team doctor advised me to take rest for the next couple of days,
“I decided to follow the doctor’s advice and took complete rest. The coach came to know that I did not follow his instructions and that I guess hurt his ego. He told me that I was not a disciplined person and hence, he never gave me a proper chance,” – criticized the former Mohan Bagan and ATK midfielder.
“After coming back from the injury, I did very well in the training sessions but he completely ignored me. In the Super Cup, he played all the young players but once again ignored me.” – Shaikh added.
Shaikh lauds Zico and Antiono Habas:
Shaikh praises his former managers Zico at FC Goa and Antonio Habas at ATK not restricted his playing time despite similar injury concerns.
“Even in the first season at FC Goa I had picked up a similar injury and was out for 10-15 days,
“Zico was the coach at that time but even he never asked me to do anything that the doctor did not advice,
“When I came back from the injury Zico called me back into the starting lineup,
“The same thing happened at ATK. I missed quite a few matches due to injury,
” But once I was fit, then coach Antonio Habas had called me back into the team.” – said the midfielder.