Ahead of the clash against Hyderabad FC, Mumbai City FC’s head-coach Sergio Lobera and midfielder Raynier Fernandes addressed the press in a pre-match press conference.
In the previous match against Jamshedpur FC, Mumbai City FC struggled to find a win even against 10-men Jamshedpur. Answering to a question, Lobera said,
“We need to learn to manage the situation well when you have the possibility to play against 10 players. During a long time, it’s not only about 15 minutes but we played more than 60 minutes against 10 players. It is a different situation now against Hyderabad FC. Looking back, Jamshedpur is comfortable playing defensively during the game. If you are playing against another team, for example Hyderabad, it’s a different situation. Because they are a strong team with the ball. Maybe, Jamshedpur is a strong team without the ball and with the ball.”
“So, we suffer a lot with 10 players, for example our team. Playing with 10 men, maybe we can suffer. But, the situation in the last game against players with a similar style of play like Jamshedpur, we need to learn about the management of the situation with the ball against 10 players. Obviously, the most important thing from the last game is finishing. Because we create a lot of chances and we need to score. When you create a lot of chances, in normal situations we need to score more goals very efficiently.” he further added.
Under the guidance of Monolo Marquez, Hyderabad FC are one of the unbeaten team in the league so far. Speaking on the challenge against Nizams, Lobera said,
“I think they have a very good team. They play very well so far. It’s a good example, the performance of Indian players, when they have the opportunity to play. A lot of merit for this team, for this coach. I really enjoy watching their games. Hopefully, tomorrow will be a very good game and everybody can enjoy good football. Hopefully, we can work in the best way possible to win the game.”
Speaking of expectations from the match, the head-coach quoted,
“I think tomorrow is going to be a very good game. Both teams try to play with the ball, try to attack and I think this kind of game is loved by the fans. I expect to play against a very good team with possession of the ball, with good players, very good striker and very good philosophy from this coach. I think it’s possible tomorrow to enjoy during 90 minutes and I hope we can enjoy during 90 minutes.“
Hyderabad FC are facing injury concerns with some of the foreign players. As a result, more Indian players are being placed and are shining in starting eleven. Lobera responded very eagerly upon being asked about the surprising result the Nizams and said,
“For me, it’s not a surprise because I know very well the profile of the players. I know the coach very well because he was working at Las Palmas, the same club where I had worked in the past. I know the style of play of the coach. I know the profile of the players.“
“The special circumstances with injuries give them opportunities to Indian players to play. They can show their level. For example, Liston is a good player, and he is my former player and I know this player very well. He had two opportunities to play and he played very well. It’s not a surprise to me, as I think Hyderabad FC have a very good team and have a very good coach. Maybe, the merit is with the injuries, the performance of the team is very good till now. Tomorrow, for us, is going to be a very difficult game against a very good team.” he added.
Liston Colaco who formerly was the part of FC Goa under Sergio Lobera didn’t get enough game time in Gaurs camp pastly. Currently, Colaco has been performing spectacular under the head-coach Manolo Marquez. After asked the plans to contain Colaco specifically, Lobera said,
“I think one specific player is not enough to win the game. The most important thing is teamwork. We need to be loyal to our style of play and our philosophy. Maybe, tomorrow we will have more spaces compared to the last game against Jamshedpur.“
“Every game is different, every team is different and we need to adapt to different circumstances. But, the most important thing is to put our focus to improve our level. We need to know all thinhs about the opponents team. I always prefer to speak very freely to my players how it’s possible to improve our level.”
Midfielder Raynier Fernandes spoke out about how he looks forward to the season and preparations going on in bio-bubble and said,
“I am working hard in my training. For me it’s all about working and training hard as much as possible. I am focused to be better day by day. The pandemic is not all we expected but in this different circumstances we have to adapt to situation.“
Answering to the question about the impact of Lobera’s style on him, Raynier said,
“Since the start of my professional career, I always wanted the coach like Sergio Lobera. It’s really great to play under him. The pre-season went so well and now training is going well. He always keeps motivating players to push more to limits.“