Manolo Marquez led Hyderabad FC are in the third position in the table after thumping their authority against Northeast United with a scoreline of 5-1. Nizams are currently on four unbeaten runs, and they are set to collide against FC Goa in their next game.
Ahead of their next game, head coach Manolo Marquez addressed the media in a pre-match press conference.
On the importance of getting 3 points in the last game and the most significant learnings from the game
” I think all the results and all the scores are crucial it doesn’t matter if you win, if you lose or if you draw and it is more important in a competition like this where you have only 20 games. Of Course, it is more crucial because you prefer to win than lose a game. It’s a short competition; we are still in the beginning; only one-quarter of the competition is completed.”
“The biggest learning from that game is we have to play through the 90 minutes. It’s normal in football when the other team scores or comes with clear chances. These are some of the difficult moments in the game. We have to control these situations, and we should play in our style again.”
On toughness and the importance of keeping the momentum throughout the season
“When I speak about the beginning, it’s not just a topic. We play games every 4-5 days because there are several injuries, and it’s in every club. So it’s difficult to predict the result at the end of the competition. The players’ injury affects the team’s performance, and it’s impossible to perform in the same way without the important players not only for us but for all the clubs. You can lose points, but it’s not the case for us, but it can happen too. This competition is small and tough. Unfortunately, because of the covid, we play only 3-4 months.”
On the challenge of facing FC Goa
” It’s another tough game, it’s not normal that a team like Goa lost three consecutive games, last season they were on a long unbeaten run, and now they have changed their system in the last two games, and now they are playing good football with trying to keep the possession. It’s going to be a tough game not only for us but for them too.”
On approach against FC Goa
“They play good football, and It’s always interesting to watch teams like Goa and Mumbai because I like their style of play. They try to keep the possession and play with the ball; even making players run behind the ball is correct, but I prefer the style of play of these kinds of teams. The style of play of Mumbai and Goa is much similar, but I know that Mumbai is one step ahead of the other teams. When you face the likes of Goa and Mumbai, you have to defend, but when you get the ball, you have to play your style. The better team in every aspect of the game usually wins the game.”
On improvement of the team from the last season
“I think many people talk about our style, and both the seasons were very, very different. Last season we focused more on our style of play regardless of the situation. Now we play according to our opponent like against Chennai we had more possession whereas against Mumbai we tried to keep the ball. Still, we couldn’t because our opponents were more superior than us even Jamshedpur they are an excellent team they are physical when we played them they were better in the first half in the second half we improved a bit. The best team this season is going to be the team which will adapt to every situation.”
On Aniket Jadhav’s performance so far this season
” I don’t like to speak about a single player, but Aniket needs to understand a few things because he came from a team which played a different style than us. He has to know which is the correct movement in every situation. He’s a player with good quality, but he needs to improve some things in positioning. I am happy with him and the other players who have joined this season.”
On how schedule is affecting the fitness of the players and how team is dealing with demanding fixtures
“I think that this problem is for all the teams, not only for us. Of Course, three matches in 10 days is too much it affects the players’ fitness. But more or less it’s same for the all the teams, for example, Bengaluru they are playing four games in 13 days it’s affecting the players, you have to look at the list of injured players in the competition. I think we have a good bench, and we have players who can play in some moments of the game as you saw against Northeast that our players can play well by coming off the bench.”
On throw-ins being used as attacking weapons this season more than last season
” No, I think it’s the same every year. I told my players the other day that I am surprised by two things in the Indian Super League. One is the number of throw-ins because the throw-in of the players like Raju, Mashoor and Tondomba is not normal, and the other thing is throw-in in India is long. Normally, players would flick it, but they can head the ball directly here. Another thing that surprised me is that it’s difficult to know whether the players like Akash Mishra, Naorem Roshan and some more players are left-footed or right-footed because their touch is exactly the same with both feet.”
On the practice required in attacking and defending of throw-ins
“You have to work on everything, let it be an attack, defense, transition or setpieces. Sometimes you are better, and sometimes you are not. The other day we scored a setpiece goal where Sana scored from the free-kick of Edu Garcia. If you have watched yesterday’s game, you will know that ATKMB and BFC are physically strong teams. It is very difficult to stop Prince, Subashish, Bruno Ramirez and Alan Costa, so to stop these kinds of players, we work on set pieces in training not only us, but I feel every teamwork on setpieces.”
On the response of youngsters towards current run of results
“Of Course, they are happy, When you are winning, everything seems fantastic, but still, we need to work on several details. It’s our philosophy to play with the young players. I told you last week that our team is a mix of young players and experienced foreigners. Nikhil Poojary is 27. Apart from him, every player is under the age of 24. They have to keep working; otherwise, it will be challenging.”
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