FC Goa held much-fancied Qatar Stars League (QSL) side Al Rayyan side to a goalless draw in their first match in the group stage. Al Wahda, on the other hand, fell to a 1-0 defeat to Persian Gulf Pro League (PGPL) giants Persepolis FC in their opening game.
FC Goa Head Coach Juan Ferrando and Al Wahda Head Coach Henk Ten Cate interacted with the press in Goa before the game on Friday. Here are the excerpts from AFC Media:
I am happy with the team's defensive display: FC Goa Head Coach Juan Ferrando
FC Goa Head Coach Juan Ferrando said the following:
“We earned a point in the last match and we are obviously looking to improve and continue in the same way in our next match,” said Ferrando. “It’s important to have control in the way we attack, especially in the final third.
“The most important aspect here is to work as a unit and stay focused on Champions League football and nothing else. Of course it is the most important journey for us as a club but we must keep our heads in the game.
“We did what was needed in the first game. I’m happy with how the team played in defence and we needed some improvements in attack but now the most important thing is the present and the future.”
We deserved a point against Persepolis: Al Wahda Head Coach Henk Ten Cate
Al-Wahda qualified for the AFC Champions League 2021 group-stage with a 2-1 win over Iraqi Premier League (IPL) side Al Zawraa in the qualifying play-off before the 1-0 loss to Persepolis FC in the first group stage fixture. This is what their head coach Henk Ten Cate had to say:
“Despite the loss in the first game. I was not unhappy with the performance of the team,” said ten Cate. “First of all we played one of the best teams in Asia and I felt we at least deserved a point.
“Now we’re facing another opponent (FC Goa) where the home advantage is not really an advantage. Because normally the advantage is because of the crowd. There’s no crowd, so there’s no home advantage.
“I watched FC Goa’s game against Al Rayyan. They are a very well organised team with a very good defensive centre with James Donachie, Iván González, Edu Bedia in the middle and they are a very strong part of the team with a very good goalkeeper.
“We are facing an opponent who already have a point but one win can change the whole dynamics of the group and we’re here to do so.”
Al Wahda vs FC Goa will kick-off at 8 PM Indian Standard Time (IST) on Saturday. The game will be televised on Star Sports 3, and live streamed on Hotstar VIP and Premium; and JIO Football 2 on JIO TV.