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I-League 2017: Even Bengaluru FC can be relegated this season, says Mumbai FC coach Santosh Kashyap

Kashyap’s side are 8th on the I-League table
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Modified 27 Feb 2017
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Another match and Mumbai FC missed an opportunity to turn around their fortunes. Mumbai fluffed numerous opportunities to take the lead and eventually had to settle for a goalless draw against Minerva Punjab FC in Sunday’s I-League encounter.  

Mumbai are now without a win in their last nine games.

“There’s no frustration, I prepared the team perfectly I believe. We dominated for almost the entire game. Minerva are a fit side, they played purely Punjabi style of football, kick and rush. They went for the draw and got it,” said Mumbai coach, Santosh Kashyap.

The manager pointed out they aren’t the only side in the I-League who are suffering. “It’s a tough time for every team. Bengaluru FC, much better set up than us but are struggling, DSK are also struggling.”

Once again Kashyap brushed aside concerns that his team could get relegated this season, “I should stop managing if I keep thinking about relegation. The six loses made the difference, we could have had 1 win or 2 draws. The situation would have been better.”

“But the bottom 6 teams are open for relegation including Bengaluru FC. If they keep playing the same way, you never know. We are not thinking about this but. My experience in the past six years and I have saved teams. I don’t think we’re such a bad team,” he added.

Kashyap’s decision to temporarily release former captain, Steven Dias, Allan Dias and Pratik Chowdhary didn’t go down well with the fans who expressed their disapproval with derogatory chants aimed at Mumbai’s coach all night long.

“Football is a game of opinion. When we won 2 games, they kept chanting Santosh Kashyap! When they’re angry, I have to accept that and I respect that. Mumbai is an entertainment hub but the fans have chosen the option of coming to watch us and support us for 90 minutes.

“They’re shouting against me or anybody. The important thing is that they’re shouting, it takes a lot of courage and energy. This situation is beyond my control,” he added.

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Kashyap further used an interesting metaphor to describe the current situation, having released three of his players mid season, “I think I am making a record. I have never lost 6 matches on the trot or sacked players in my career but the blame is again on me.”

“I treat my players as kids, I blast them, motivate them, I guide them. I do the same thing at home too, for my kids. Every time parents aren’t always wrong, kids can be wrong too. But that doesn’t mean you tell the kids to leave home, you bring them in line and accept them again. I don’t know if this is possible in this case though, such is the situation,” he explained. 

Published 27 Feb 2017, 10:01 IST
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