ISL 2016: Hard work in practice sessions paid off, says Mumbai City FC manager Alexandre Guimaraes
Mumbai City FC kick-started their ISL 2016 campaign with a 1-0 victory over rivals FC Pune City with a 68th winner from the Argentine winger, Matias Defederico. Mumbai City, who had not registered a single win in their first 13 away games in the history of the ISL, now have two wins on the trot, having beaten Atletico de Kolkata 3-2 away in Kolkata in their last ISL match on 4 December 2015. They also registered their first victory on an opening day after losing their previous opening encounters.
Alexandre Guimaraes, the Mumbai manager was ecstatic after their win over Pune as he said, "It's a really good start to the new season as the team managed different situations in the game very well. We suffered quite a few setbacks in the last week with injuries but the team has shown it's tremendous credibility and played against a good team with great discipline. We were on the winning side because of our defensive organization which handled Pune's counter attacks well."
Diego Forlan not provided with quality service
Mumbai took some time to get in the game but slowly stamped their authority as they looked a far more better-prepared team than the Stallions. Diego Forlan was left frustrated at times because of the lack of service provided to the Uruguayan but his ability to drop deep attracted defenders towards him and created much-needed space in the final third.
Guimaraes continued on his team's performance as he said, "We still have many areas to improve. After nearly a month of a preseason in Dubai, we are getting used to the tempo that is required and are playing the way I want them to play. In defense, we have to be more alert and I want to congratulate our goalkeeper on a fantastic performance."
Guimaraes also told the press the reason for leaving Jackichand Singh on the bench as he had missed days of training. He also was pretty pumped up with his team's winning start as he stressed on the fact that the team's Dubai practice sessions showed on the pitch. Matias Defederico ran the show for Mumbai with 26 passes and 2 shots in his 76-minute appearance.