This article contains the transcribed version of the post-match press conference of the first Semi Final contested between FC Goa and Mumbai City FC.
After a hard fought battle, FC Goa and Mumbai City FC concluded their first leg of the Semi Final in a stalemate.
FC Goa has been a dominant force keeping majority of the possession throughout the game although many decisions were wrongly filed against them. Speaking about the same coach Juan Ferrando said, “We had plenty of opportunities but at the end of the day its about the referees, we can definitely play against Mumbai but not against 14 players.”
There was entertaining football played by both the sides, even though FC Goa missed two key players, the game resulted in a 2-2 draw, when asked about if the team will have a mental edge ahead of the second leg, he said, “Not only two key players, but I’ve also lost a lot more, Edu wasn’t a hundred percent fit, Ali, and now Princeton because of some dangerous tackles on the pitch. I didn’t even had Ivan and Noguera for this game which made it a lot more difficult to pick the team for such an important game.”
The Gaurs have had some impediments setting up the back four albeit having a shrewd attack, the coach reasoned by quoting, “I think sometimes it (the defense) was good but in transitions we repeated the same mistakes. Although its normal but in the last few games it was tough to maintain more or less the same lineup because we had a lot of injuries.”
Goa dominated the first 30 minutes, but after the water break the momentum changed with the injury propping up. “I repeat, today only as many as 6 players on the pitch were a hundred percent fit the rest had big problems, Edu had a fracture but he had some injections to prepare for this game. Its very tough to play football in such conditions,” Ferrando added.
FC Goa’s season was plagued with injuries but we witnessed a lot of youngsters rise up to the occasion, speaking about the same, the gaffer said, “Princeton was forced out by an incredibly bad tackle. It was not a football tackle, rather it was a Taekwando one. Seriton had some issues during his last game, so he was rested against Hyderabad. We’ve had a lot of injuries because of (reckless) tackles. In Leander’s case, I am happy because he was out of the squad for most of the season. He got his opportunity in the Semi-final and we fully believe in him.”