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ISL- Indian Super League

This type of teams are good for us to show our performance, Juan Ferrando on facing FC Goa

Published at :December 22, 2023 at 7:20 PM
Modified at :January 14, 2024 at 12:31 AM
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Uttiyo Sarkar


Ferrando stated that he has full faith in young defenders Ravi Rana & Sumit Rathi.

Mohun Bagan Super Giant will be looking to get back to winning ways when they host FC Goa in the Indian Super League (ISL) at the Salt Lake Stadium, Kolkata on Saturday (December 23).

Coming from a dramatic loss against Mumbai City FC, Juan Ferrando has a major task ahead of breaking his former side’s unbeaten run and inspiring his boys to a win.

Thoughts on FC Goa clash

Ferrando is aware of the threat that his ex-side brings against the Mariners, as he said: “They have started the season so well. They’re playing in good performances as they have had very good results home and away. This season they’ve signed good players, so it’ll be a tough game but a good challenge for us to play against. This type of teams are good for us to show our good performance. It’s important for us to think about ourselves, of course, we respect FC Goa, but we need to think about ourselves than the opponent.”

Verdict on Sumit Rathi and Ravi Rana

With Hector Yuste and Asish Rai suspended against FC Goa, the Mariners might need to turn to young defenders like Sumit Rathi and Ravi Rana for the game. When asked if he feels they are up for the task, the gaffer said: “Rana and Sumit had played against Maziya and played well at the Maldives in that game. Both players have helped a lot in the CFL and played the Durand Cup. Ravi has been working with us for two and a half years and I trust Sumit too.

“Last season Sumit didn’t play a lot of matches but played in the final. I trust in them, of course, they have different qualities than other players, but I think Rana and Sumit can help the team be it for 80 minutes or 1 minute. They are young players, they are the future, and they need time and confidence. It’s not important about who plays tomorrow, it’s important that they are ready,” he added.

Can one point be enough against FC Goa?

Ferrando was questioned on if a draw against the unbeaten Goa side can be a decent result and answered: “No in my opinion we are a big club because we go for three points in every game. We are in a difficult situation, but he big clubs have to show big character. I’m not happy if we only get one point, our target is to get three points all the time.

“The players have two arms and two legs, so I’m so happy about them. In this case, we need to change some details and prepare differently but this is a part of football. I’m optimistic as we have 24 players in the squad who are ready to help the team. In football, problems exist all the time and our target is to face the problems and find solutions.”

Formation doesn’t matter

The Spaniard also insists that the formation that his side plays doesn’t matter but urged his players to keep their emotions in control, saying: “The system is not about the success of the defence or the attack. We have a plan, sometimes we have success because we have control about some details. It’s not related to the system if you have more success in defence than in attack.

“It depends on the opponents, our emotions and our physical condition. I’m happy because the important thing for me in the last match is that our 9-man side created chances until the last minute and was close to getting it to a 2-2 draw. That was a positive thing for me.”

Reason behind injuries

Ferrando also ranted about the manner in which his key players have gotten injured this season and believes they should receive more protection from referees.

He stated: “Decisions of the referees are not in my hands. It’s important for the players to control their emotions and energy. It’s in my hands to help them control them. The decisions of referees or opponents aren’t in my hands, so I don’t like to think about these things. It’s important that the players are ready for tomorrow and not be scared of yellow cards or red cards. If we get more cards, maybe we need to find another plan, it’s not possible to do nothing. Like for example, injuries this season have been like Ashique with the national team, Anwar against Bashundhara, Glan and Sahal due to the tackles against Odisha.

“All the injuries this season have been caused by rough tackles in difficult moments. But it’s necessary for referees to protect my players, if they don’t want to protect the players…that’s all. In this case, I can’t tell you anything. Maybe Crystal (John) doesn’t (want) to play the national team with good players. But it’s not necessary for me to put focus on these things,” he added.

No blame for medical staff and thoughts on final matches of 2023

Ferrando refuses to blame his medical staff for all the pile-up of injuries over the course of the last few seasons, saying: “If you check the injuries, it’s not about the fitness coaches or doctor. If you see last season, Manvir got injured due to a bad tackle on his ankle, Deepak suffered a bad injury due to a rash tackle against NorthEast. Joni Kauko got injured due to a bad tackle against Goa. Carl (McHugh) also suffered a bad tackle against Chennaiyin. A lot of injuries are because of 90% of bad tackles.

“This season is also the same, apart from some players with groin or hamstring issues. But this is a part of football, maybe the reason is everyone wants to play more aggressively against Mohun Bagan because everyone knows we are a big club and wants to play more aggressively. It’s not a problem about the medical staff, but 90% of the injuries are for bad tackles. We are disappointed, but the most important is to support the player and try to do the best in recoveries,” he added.

The Mohun Bagan coach believes that his side needs to continue working their way to improve themselves heading into the final games of 2023, as he said: “Honestly, after the game against Mumbai, it’s important to be ready for the next matches. I’m disappointed as we have no time to work on tactical things, but in this moment when you lose one match and then you immediately have another match, you can change your mood.

“In this moment of the season we’ve played against the top teams knowing we aren’t in the best moments, but this is a challenge. We need to continue working. We have three matches more in the first leg and 11 matches for the second leg and one Super Cup in January. I don’t like to cry about injuries or red cards. This is a part of life, we’re in a good moment and are positive,” he ended with.

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