ISL 2017: Bengaluru FC's fluidity is a 'lot more advanced', says Mumbai City coach Guimaraes
Last year Mumbai City had topped the Indian Super League (ISL) table after the league stage but this year saw The Islanders suffer a defeat in their very first encounter as Bengaluru FC won 2-0 at the Kanteerava Stadium on Sunday night.
Guimaraes was very gracious following the defeat in the season opener and congratulated the Bengaluru side on the win. It was their first outing in the championship and the result sees them top of the table for the time being.
"Congrats to Bengaluru; they have a core of players playing together for a long time compared to other teams in the ISL and they showed that today. The fluidity in their game is a lot more advanced. They're going to be a very tough rival for the other teams this season."
With Bengaluru in command throughout the game, many suspected his gameplan was to play for a draw. However, Guimaraes disagreed.
"We didn't come for a draw, we came to try to win - that is always our first idea. We had some situations immediately during the game where we had to change our gameplan but it had nothing to do with the way the other team played.
"They played better than us today," he admitted. "We take this loss as a lesson on what we have to adjust for the next game."
Injuries hit Mumbai City squad early in the season
Without the services of the unfit Balwant Singh, the Mumbai side did not have a true forward leading the line but Guimaraes opted to play safe rather than risk losing him to a more serious injury.
"Everyone did their best to get Balwant to play but he didn't feel 100% so it was better in his case to keep him safe for the next game," the Costa Rican coach explained.
Mumbai were dealt another blow when Leonardo Da Costa limped off the pitch after just 18 minutes into the game.
"Leo Costa felt some tension in his muscle. The warning signs were there so we decided to take him out.
"The doctors have four days to get them back to full fitness before the next game."
Mumbai City play their second fixture at home against FC Goa on 25 November while Bengaluru host Delhi Dynamos on 26 November.