ATK Mohun Bagan secured a 2-0 victory over FC Goa at the Athletic Stadium in Bambolim, Goa on Tuesday. With the win, the Mariners extended their unbeaten streak to eleven games and are now level on points with table-toppers Hyderabad FC.
Although ATKMB came away with the win, head coach Juan Ferrando wasn't satisfied with some of the finer footballing details. Asked if he felt FC Goa looked like the better ISL team in some phases, the Spaniard said:
"I'm not thinking about FC Goa. I'm thinking about my team. We had more opportunities I think, but to be honest in the build-up, in the timing of press today was not good. I understand the players are very tired. Today was a difficult game for them because after 45 hours it's very difficult to play. The players had personality and I’m very happy with the character of the team but I am upset about some details in the football."
Sandesh Jhingan returned to the ATK Mohun Bagan starting lineup after eleven months. Hence, Ferrando opted to play three-at-the-back to accommodate him. Asked if this is going to be his preferred system going forward, Ferrando said:
"The system for me is not important because we started the system with 3-5-2 because we wanted to work in build-up. We had no success and changed to 4-2-3-1 with the right back and left back inside. We had no success and in the end, we played 4-4-2 to try and improve in the build-up, and in the end, also changed some details of the high press because the high press was terrible today."
Check out the ISL clean sheets here.
"We lost the ball in the midfield quite often" - Derrick Pereira talks about his side's loss against ATK Mohun Bagan
Meanwhile, FC Goa boss Derrick Pereira's shoulders seemed dropped after his side's defeat. The Gaurs had a COVID-19 outbreak in the camp ahead of the game and Pereira was also reportedly down with the virus recently.
FC Goa have been one of the anomalies of the season, dominating plenty of possession but failing to win matches.
However, after the 5-0 drubbing of Chennaiyin FC, things seemed to be on track for the Gaurs. Asked if tonight's loss was a reality check after the victory in the last game, Derrick Pereira said:
"They are two different teams. We went with a plan and tried to settle down as a team. It’s not an excuse, but it's the truth that we had cases in our camp, where some players had to be left out. We could not train yesterday because of certain reasons. So I think we missed out in the midfield today, the early goal put us down. And, of course in the second half also a missed pass which resulted in the goal. That put a lot of pressure on the team. We lost the ball in the midfield quite often and that has hampered our performance."
With 18 points from 17 matches, FC Goa are ninth in the ISL points table and virtually out of the top-four race.