FC Goa head coach Carlos Pena expects the Kerala Blasters FC match to be the hardest of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2022–23 season. Pena was confident his club would beat FC Goa in Kochi on Sunday at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
The two football-loving coastal clubs have clashed 16 times in the Hero ISL, with only four draws. All four of those draws occurred in the previous five games, showing how close the two teams have been lately.
Press conference with Pena and Edu Bedia before the game Pena’s conference excerpts: The preceding game required an all-Indian defence due to foreign player injuries. Would you use an all-Indian defence in the back regularly?
We think this We have a large group from the start and enough high-quality Indian players to play in the back four, which will aid all the foreign forwards. We approach several game scenarios from different sides. Possible. ʼ The players’ hard work won the last game. I’m thrilled for Glan and the team.
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Alvaro Vazquez and Mohamed Fares Arnaout— Can you update us? Pena: A few players are trying to attend the game, but there are two sessions left. No hints. Observe. Sunday will determine who we can trust.
Are you impressed with the team’s performance in the most recent game against Jamshedpur FC, especially after scoring two goals and dominating the tempo? We anticipated the game; however, many aspects require improvement. We had a few minutes in each half that we didn’t control, and they had a few chances, but that’s how it goes sometimes. Jamshedpur FC won. Kerala Blasters FC plays us on Sunday. against a different team. Again, three points.
Kerala Blasters FC has tied in three of the last four games. What are your expectations for the match? Pena: I apologize for repeating myself, but it will be hard for us and them. We’ll play a tough team in a great stadium. We’re confident, but it’ll be hard. If we think everything will be easy, we’re wrong. The Sunday matchup will be our toughest yet. That’s our strategy.
They Routinely Put the Ball in the Opponent’s Half and Apply Pressure
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Seriton Fernandes will play his 100th Hero ISL game against Kerala Blasters FC. How important was that player? He’s your top pick again because you played with him. Goan. Playing for FC Goa is his dream. I encourage Seriton (Fernandes) to train and have fun since he has potential for the national team. Thus, I am delighted with him, his commitment, and his performances. Complete 100 games the same way.
So what should you do? Pena: Kerala Blasters and FC Goa play similarly. They may have fewer possessions than FC Goa, but they are good at transitions. They routinely put the ball in the opponent’s half and apply pressure. But owning something isn’t everything.
Possession may win or lose games. We’ve handled this aspect of the game well thus far. We’ve sometimes had the ball better than others. Our games will be themed. We aim to win every game.
The team started well. . After playing these four games, how much does it help you understand the culture and communicate with players? Pena: In these four games, we started well but failed. Just started. We’re happy, but there’s still work.
I enjoy this confidence, which goes beyond these four games. I knew it would help me to know the surroundings, the players’ experiences, their potential, the facilities, and the club’s members. I knew that before arriving, and everything is going well.