Jamshedpur FC and Hyderabad FC shared the spoils after an evenly contested ISL encounter that ended 1-1 at the Athletic Stadium in Bambolim, Goa on Thursday.
Greg Stewart’s maiden ISL goal handed Jamshedpur the lead in the 41st minute, but Bartholomew Ogbeche’s 56th-minute strike dragged Hyderabad back on level terms.
The first half proved fruitless for Hyderabad as Jamshedpur applied relentless pressure on them with their high-pressing approach. For a change, the ever-calm Manolo Marquez appeared palpably annoyed after the game.
Addressing the media in the post-match press conference, the Hyderabad FC head coach said:
“I am angry with [our performance in] the first-half tonight. All the credit goes to Jamshedpur for that. Since I joined Hyderabad FC, tonight’s first-half was the worst 45 minutes in the team. It wasn’t a disaster, but it was still very bad. We had time to recover in the second-half, and luckily we equalised after attacking more on the wings.”
The Nizams looked a different side in the second half, buoyed by a much improved display from their wingers. On being asked if Edu Garcia’s creativity was missing in midfield, Marquez replied:
“We can't say anything about any player because this is a competition that you play every 4-5 days. So there is always a possibility of injured players. Edu is a great player but for us Halicharan Narzary is a great player too. Sahil Tavora and every player who is injured is very important for us. Now let's see about Yasir. This is a normal situation in any season and more so when you play consecutive games every three, four, five days. You can say there are injuries practically every day.”
Marquez was also asked about his plans for 24-year-old Spanish striker Javier Siverio, whom he rates very highly. He came on as a substitute for Joel Chianese in the 76th minute. The former Espanyol B coach revealed:
“He deserves to play more minutes but he is very young and he will have to wait for his moment. I’m sure he will score goals because he has scored goals all his life. He will play soon.”
“We could’ve been a couple of goals up at half time” – Owen Coyle
Jamshedpur FC, under Owen Coyle’s stewardship, are yet to lose a game in the ongoing edition of the ISL. Thursday’s result saw them remain rooted to fifth spot in the ISL table with one win and two draws.
The Red Miners were by far the better ISL team in the first half, denying the visitors any chance to charge forward. Reflecting on his side’s overall performance in the match, Coyle said:
“Over the period we should have got the three points. That said, when you have Ogbeche on the field, if you give him a little bit of margin he will score, as he did. I don’t think Rehenesh had a lot to do in the game. We should’ve led 2-0 at the break. But it’s another game unbeaten; probably [we] should have got more points. I think we will continue to get better as we move forward.”
Jamshedpur’s regular captain Peter Hartley was unwell on Thursday, which led Eli Sabia to replace him and wear the captain’s armband. On being asked if the rotation between Hartley and Sabia would continue through the season, Coyle answered:
"No, the skipper was unwell for the last couple of days. So there’s a chance that the two of them might play together. It’s about getting the balance. We have Jordan Murray missing today due to an injury. So there’s real competition for places. It’s a headache for the coach but I would rather have that.”
Jamshedpur had eight shots at goal in the match, but they managed to convert only one of them. When asked if he was satisfied with Greg Stewart's performance as Jamshedpur's big-ticket player, Coyle replied:
"I think there’s more to come from him. I still don’t think he is at his maximum. He had a few niggles coming into the season. But everyday he is working so hard. We saw wonderful quality from him today. He has got good passing as well. He is a team player and he will be important for us moving forward.”
Jamshedpur will next lock horns with ATK Mohun Bagan on Monday, 6th December.
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