ISL 2016: "Give us your all and we will give you our all", says Kerala Blasters coach Steve Coppell to the home crowd
Kerala Blasters were handed their second defeat of their campaign from as many matches by the Atletico de Kolkata in last night’s ISL game. Unlike the previous match against NorthEast United, the Blasters certainly looked much better in the field and they will be disheartened not to get a point out of the game.
The Kerala Blasters coach, Steve Coppell thought the result was unfair given the amount of hard work the team showed in the field.
Pleased with players commitment, says Kerala Blasters coach Steve Coppell
“I think we deserved something from the game, they are a very good side and they will be difficult for many teams to beat. They are very composed with possession and had a little bit more composure in certain situations for sure, but I am really pleased with my players and their commitments and they were trying to take the game to the opposition,” said the former Reading manager.
Coppell continued and said, “The goal was cruel it was a massive deflection and similar to one that was scored in Kolkata the other night, that time it worked against them, this time, it worked for them and I am sure during the course of the season we will get a situation where somebody shoots it goes in the crowd and the next minute it finds the back of the net.”
When asked to comment on the penalty incident, he said, “I must admit when it happened in the real time I thought it was a penalty, when the referee blew I thought it was a penalty but then it became obvious he hasn’t blown for a penalty. I haven’t seen it, the replays, maybe you have and have a better opinion, but he has a shooting opportunity and he chose not to take it and so you ask the question why? Was he tackled fairly I really don’t know until I see it but.”
No pace on the wings
Blasters lacked pace down the wings and one of their fastest players, Antonio German, played down the middle.
“Well, I wanted to play German down the middle, I didn’t want him playing that wide.Rafique came after an injury and to me, he lasting the full 90 minutes was a great achievement, he really battled through it and so do Farukh Choudhary, who just ran out of legs in the second half. We were doing our best to have more width in our play,” said the English coach on his wide players
He also pointed out his non-involvement in the Indian player’s selection and said, “The Indian squad was here when I came, I had no say in the balance of the squad. So in retrospect, I wish we had a little bit more of width and I wish we had maybe another full back involved just to give us more options.”
Coppell on his squad and the Kerala fans
Coppell said that his squad has good quality, “No, we do have good quality but I agree we have been getting into really good situations and we don’t hit the target, so we haven’t done but the past doesn’t equal the future, just because it has happened in the past doesn’t mean that it is gonna happen in the future, obviously we haven’t scored in the two matches and we have to get better individually and collectively.”
The Kerala coach also wanted the home crowd to continue to back the players in the same way they did today, “Two defeats in two games, this was certainly not what we were planned and worked for.”
“I look at the players have they tried hard, have they given all. I think the supporters today would see that the players were committed, they kept on going right until the end. This is one of the best atmospheres I have ever been involved with football, I call it devotion, it is devotion to their own club and we appreciate it and we need it.”