Manolo Marquez – Ogbeche’s absence won’t affect the team’s performance

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Hyderabad FC head coach Manolo Marquez addressed the media ahead of their game against Chennaiyin FC on Thursday at the Fatorda Stadium from 7:30 PM.

Manolo spoke about the team’s missed chances and if it cost the team the win against Kerala Blasters. Also if the defeat was a momentum breaker or was it just an off day for the team. Here is what he has to say,

I am not aware of any team in my life that didn’t lose even one game. In football, you either win, draw or lose. There are some moments in the league when you can be a lot of games unbeaten like our team. And then there is a moment in a season when you are not okay and maybe you don’t get to win some games. But I think that day against Kerala Blasters FC was not one of our worst games. We missed some clear chances and they have some very good offensive players and a strong defensive side too. In my opinion, I don’t think (it will break momentum) and we will continue in a good way. Let’s see, we face a tough opponent again.”

The defeat against Kerala Blasters was just the second of the season for Hyderabad FC. Marquez shared his verdict about how he will motivate the team to avoid any further lapses and the areas where the team need to improve.

I don’t know, but if you play the first leg and you have 16 points with four wins, four draws and two defeats and you repeat that in the second leg with the same numbers then the team could be in the semi-finals. Then we have to recover the team physically and mentally and let’s see what happens. In this league every day, every interview with the coach is the same. We can see that every team can beat the other. Even SC East Bengal with eleven Indian players made it difficult. Jamshedpur FC only scored in the 88th minute. All the teams are very tough with a lot of good players and every game is very tough.”

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Manolo analysed opponent Chennaiyin FC’s campaign so far.

They have a new coach and a lot of new players. In the beginning, especially in our game, they didn’t deserve to win. But results give you confidence. They started the season very well after that they lost some games. After that, it’s been up and down but there are seven teams separated by three points. If we win, we will be top of the table but if we lose, Chennaiyin FC will go above us.

They are a strong team with a very good coach and are well organised. Of course, it will be another difficult game because they don’t create many chances but concede very few. They have conceded just 12 goals and seven of those are in two games. It means that they have conceded just five goals in eight games. They are a team that prepares to play in a counter-attacking style rather than manage the possession. They have another style but are a very good team.

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Hyderabad FC lost the first match against Chennaiyin FC. Marquez shared his views on if the team is better prepared to face them this time.

Yes, we train to improve the team. I think it was an accident to lose that game. I don’t remember clear chances for Chennaiyin FC. It’s true that in that game they played with ten players behind the ball and they took advantage of one mistake from our team and Anirudh Thapa was very clever and won a clear penalty. But it is not about learning from that game but about how we want to play. In football, if you don’t score your chances, it can happen again. Sometimes, you can also play a bad game and still win 1-0. You don’t know what will happen. In this competition, anything can happen.”

The ISL table is very close this season. A win or loss can change the equation completely. Manolo spoke about how he makes sure that the players give their best in every game.

“We are playing a very difficult competition. All 11 teams are in a bubble for a long time. We don’t know what will happen. We don’t know if more games will be cancelled or when we will play. I think the mentally stronger teams have better chances than other teams.”

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