ISL 2016: Antonio Habas says that he needs time to instill his ideas on the Stallions' squad
FC Pune City welcome Atletico De Kolkata today, as the bottom placed team face a strong side which may go top of the pile with a victory. The game has extra importance because of a certain Antonio Habas who had taken the Kolkata side to win the inaugural ISL and is a celebrated figure in ATK's history in the league.
This is the first time that Habas will manage against his former team and he spoke about his team and his former team in his pre-match press conference.
When asked about facing his old team, Habas replied, “I had a great time in Kolkata and had a brilliant relationship with everyone related with the club.”
He also accepted the fact that Pune City have not been convincing, “Very small margins have cost us 3-4 points. Some individual mistakes have also happened as those margins have got us in this situation. "
Being bottom of the table will be a new experience for Habas but the Spanish manager hoped to change that soon, “We have to build a team here. It will take us time to instill my ideas into these players to make them play ‘the Habas way'. When I joined Pune, we did not come with an aim to claim the first spot straight away. This is a project which needs time and we are fully committed to it.”
Habas also reflected on the fact that ATK have almost retained half of their squad while the Stallions have undergone a major overhaul before the start of ISL 3. The former Valencia man thanked Pune City's owners and said, “I have to say thanks to the owners as we had a fruitful discussion when I arrived in January that the aim is building a foundation. It will obviously take time but I have high hopes for these set of players. "
FC Pune City had their worst start to an ISL season and are still without a win at their home ground. When asked about his team's chances of reaching the playoffs, Habas said, “Right now, we have no chance of reaching the semi-finals. But this is a close league and if we win the next two games we will go 5th. So, we will fight till it's mathematically possible to reach the semis. Our aim was to be in the top four and we are working each day to change our fortunes.”
More Indian Football news, transfer rumours, analysis and features at Sportskeeda.com