Two assistant coaches attended the press conference before the game on behalf of Josep Gombau.

Odisha FC marked their return to the Kalinga Stadium with a 2-1 win over Jamshedpur FC and they host Chennaiyin FC in their first game of the calendar year. Assistant coaches Jacobo Varela and Thangboi Singto along with player Nandhakumar Sekar spoke to the media in the pre-match press conference.

Coaches’ Corner

Thangboi Singto shared his thoughts on Odisha FC’s performance so far. He said, “We are one of the teams in the league that has created a lot of chances, created a number of crosses. Of course, we need to score more goals to win games and going forward we are confident.”

“Under Josep Gombau, we are trying to plug our loopholes and hopefully in the next match we go for a clean-sheet, that’s what we aim for.”

Thangboi was quizzed about the condition of the pitch to which he replied, “I keep talking to colleagues. I think the same thing happened with Jamshedpur in their first ISL season. The credit should be given to the league, staff and the government, that in spite of such short notice this is what the best they could give.”

“Of course, if the pitch is good the players can play very well, we can play a passing game, the chances of injuries are lesser. We believe that the pitch for the next game will be better than the pitch we had in our first game because there’s been a lot of work put on it.”

Meanwhile, Jacobo Varela had a few words about the managerial change at Chennaiyin FC. “They’ve changed their head coach and the first thing that comes to my mind is that they are scoring more goals, they have scored seven goals in their last three games. It is true that they are also conceding, in these three games, they have got only one win.”

“They are doing some things very similar to what they were doing in the past with their previous coach. But, you can also see certain changes, when they play upfront and are strong with their back four. I’m sure it won’t be an easy game, even playing at home it is hard. We are very similar to each other and I’m sure it will be a tough game for us.”

Speaking about the support Odisha FC received as they returned to play in their home stadium after a very long time, Thangboi Singto said, “We are very thankful to all the fans that showed up at our previous game and we hope that there will be more tomorrow because fans are very important. If there are more fans, we’ll be much more motivated and we will be able to put in extra effort and perform better.

“We request the people of Odisha to show up tomorrow, support us first and then support the good football that both teams will work towards putting on show tomorrow,” he concluded.

Team News

Odisha FC have a fully fit squad as they gear up for their first match of this calendar year against Chennaiyin FC.

Head-To-Head

Match Highlights: Reverse Fixture: Chennaiyin FC 2-2 Odisha FC

Odisha FC and Chennaiyin FC met for the first time earlier this season and both teams shared the spoils in a match that ended 2-2.

Probable Lineup

Arshdeep, Sarangi, Diagne, Delgado, Das; Vinit, Tebar; Jerry, Xisco, Nandhakumar; Santana.

Broadcast

The game will commence from 7:30 PM IST on Monday and will be telecast live on Star Sports 1 and Star Sports 1 HD. It will also be available to stream on Hotstar and Jio TV.