The Odisha FC head coach also shed light on why he took off Raynier Fernandes in the first half.

It was another win for Odisha FC at home as they defeated NorthEast United by a margin of 2-1. With this, the Juggernauts are able to maintain their perfect record at home (wins in all games). Odisha FC scored the first goal in the first half, followed by NorthEast equalizing in the 59th minute. Eventually, in the 77th minute, Jerry scored his fourth goal of the season to ensure that the team’s perfect home run remains unabated. After the game, Odisha FC head coach Josep Gombau addressed the post-match press conference.

Here’s what he said.

Coach’s reaction to the game

Gombau expressed his thoughts on the game in the press conference. He said:

“We knew and I also told to my players that this is not an easy game. NorthEast was doing well. Even if they are not winning, they are a top opponent. In their last two/three games, they did very well. They were very close to getting a result in the game against ATK Mohun Bagan playing away. So, we did not think the game to be an easy one. The game was as difficult as we expected it to be. We are happy because we have three points.”

On the consistent performance of the team

Gombau seemed impressed with the performance of his team and the kind of teamwork shown by the side. He said:

“In the way we play football, we use our wingers a lot and they get a lot of chances. Of course, we are happy with them. But it is a team effort that created chances for them and through which they scored. All the players are working hard, they are defending well and building well from the back. We are happy because we are using many local players. Everyone is committed, everyone is working hard, and everyone is eager to go inside the field. We are using a lot of players and all of them have been improving their game.”

On Indian players playing well for the side

Josep Gombau could not hide his happiness regarding the performance of the Indian players from his side. He praised his players and also the mentality shown by the team in every game. He said:

“This is something very nice for me. I am so happy for them. They are both wingers (Nandhakumar Sekar and Jerry Mawihmingthanga) and both of them have four goals each this season so far, which is a good number. I would also like to talk about Thoiba Singh. He works a lot and fights for every second ball. He and Isaac are also playing very well.

“Everybody, including the foreign players, was outstanding today. The spirit and mentality of the team are very good. When it was 1-1, everybody believed that we can get the second goal. That is why we brought in a few attackers on the field to win the game,” he added.

Reason for substituting Raynier in the first half

Gombau informed why he subbed off Raynier Fernandes early in the first half.

“Raynier was injured. He came to me after the goal and told me that he is uncomfortable. I did not want to take any risk, especially with a player like Isaac on the bench. I decided to make the change to ensure that he does not get injured for a long time.”

Reaction to the stadium and the fans coming in large numbers

Josep Gombau reacted to the ambiance of the stadium and showcased his happiness about being able to play in front of fans. He said:

“It is fantastic. A lot of people are supporting us. We are very happy as the facilities at the stadium are amazing. When we play here, we feel at home. It is important that they continue to support us. We will learn more and we will play better. We will be coming back to the stadium for a game against ATK Mohun Bagan and we are excited about that.”

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