Defensively strong Jamshedpur face leaders Chennaiyin in ISL
Jamshedpur, Dec 27 (PTI) It will be a test of debutant Jamshedpur FC's robust defensive structure when they take on leaders Chennaiyin FC in a Hero Indian Super League (ISL) match, here tomorrow.
Steve Coppell's robust defensive organisation has made Jamshedpur FC a tough, if not the most exciting, team in their debut ISL season.
The Englishman's side is currently sixth on the table with nine points. And such is the congestion at the top of the standings that a positive result against Chennaiyin FC tomorrow will leave them only a point behind the league leaders.
Jamshedpur FC haven't scored many goals but, at the same time, they have been really miserly at the back.
They have only lost once so far, and have eked out three draws to go with the two wins.
Considering the fact that Jamshedpur FC are playing their first ISL season, Coppell has been very pragmatic in his approach.
Talking about his team's inability to score too many goals and their style of play Coppell said the team has to think of long-term goals and make sure it doesn't end up in a disastrous position at the end of the season.
"It is obvious from the number of games we have played and the goals that we have scored. But it's not for lack of trying. We are, as always, working very hard on the training field. And we try and score more goals. It is the main objective in football. But we have not conceded many goals," Coppell said today.
"There is not just one way of being successful at football. Thankfully there are many. Maybe it's not the same as everyone else but we are doing fine for now," he added.
Jamshedpur FC will be without first-choice centre-back Anas Edathodika yet again due to injury but star midfielder Mehtab Hossain is fit and ready to feature in tomorrow's clash at JRD Tata Sports Complex.
"Mehtab Hossain is fit but Anas is not fit yet. He is getting some treatment on his leg. He will be back with us today and we'll hopefully be able to incorporate him back into the squad," Coppell said.
After having shared points in the 'Southern Derby' against Kerala FC, Chennaiyin FC will be looking to stretch their lead at the top of the table with a win over Jamshedpur.
John Gregory's side is currently leading the pack with 13 points from seven games.
But the Chennaiyin coach knows it's not going to be an easy game against his fellow Englishman's team.
"It is not going to be an easy game. They have proved to be a very difficult side to beat. They haven't scored many goals but they haven't conceded many either. I know Steve (Coppell) well. He has got his side well drilled," Gregory said