In an exclusive interview, Carlos Rodríguez shares his impression of Hong Kong football, the cultural diversity at Southern and why he likes to do yoga.
They say that the world is a small place, especially in the context of Hong Kong, though it seems that Spain is not much bigger. Southern’s Carlos Rodríguez Molina grew up in the same small town of 4,000 people, Elche de la Sierra, as former Kitchee hero Juan Belencoso. Rodríguez explains: “I knew who he was, but I didn’t know him in person. I used to see him walking around, and eventually I heard that he had gone to Hong Kong.”
Two degrees of separation aside, Southern have strengthened their squad over the summer, and with this came a new flair that the Spanish contingent of players has brought with them to Hong Kong. This includes Carlos Rodríguez, who after a journey across the Spanish leagues, is enjoying his new overseas adventure and keen to learn more about his new home. But he also as big goals with his club.
“We hope to finish in the top three of the Premier League and we want to win at least one cup. We know it is difficult as we had to deal with many injuries including myself and now Carles Martinez, but I think when we all recover then the team will be able to challenge for a trophy.”
Rodríguez also commented on the state of Hong Kong football and said that the standard was improving and would continue to do so in the future.
“I think that football in Hong Kong is not bad and it is improving year by year. All the players have to work a little bit more and become more professional. Almost all the Chinese players here have the ability.”
Southern also have a diverse team, which Rodríguez believes is beneficial, as it comes with a certain flair, imagination and shared ideas.
“Yes, I think as foreign players we can contribute with our experiences from other leagues. The diverse culture is good, as we have one Brazilian, a half-New Zealander, and four Spanish players.”
Recently, Southern have also implemented yoga into their training routine as a way to keep the players fresh and to maintain a competitive edge. Rodríguez praised this new direction as a form of balance.
“It is good for relaxing and stretching the muscles. This is why we usually do yoga on Mondays after the games.”
Always on the move, Hong Kong football fans will no doubt see a lot more of Carlos Rodríguez Molina as the season progresses.