The Spaniard spoke after his side’s heavily disappointing result against the Men of Steel.
Mumbai City FC’s charge for the first-place finish has all but ended after their most recent Indian Super League 2020-21 result. The Islanders were shocked by Jamshedpur FC by a 2-0 scoreline. Sergio Lobera and his men have realistically conceded the first place in the league standings to ATK Mohun Bagan, which would have ensured a direct AFC Champions League qualification. With five points separating the sides and two games left to play, the comeback seems unlikely.
The tactician was visibly distraught as he faced the questions during the post-match media interaction.
Admission of defeat
With three defeats in the last five games, MCFC’s season capitulated in a flash. Speaking in this context, Sergio Lobera gave his account of the series of events, saying, “In the most important moment of the season, we are losing games and obviously we need to analyze this situation, me firstly as a coach. For me, it’s the worst game we have played so far and we deserve the defeat.”
A game of tactics
The coach was asked whether the poor results were the cause of the opposition reading the tactics and setting up well to counter Mumbai City. He responded, saying, “I don’t think so because during 10 games we won eight. Everyone knows our gameplay and our style of play.
“I think we need to improve more about being loyal to the style of play during some situations in the game. I know the players are under pressure. It’s not easy to manage the situation well, but I don’t think the problem is this (the opponents reading the tactics).”
Mood from bench
The 44-year-old also gave an insight on why he looked unhappy from the sidelines and possible reasons for his demeanour. He expressed, “I think we are strong when we have possession of the ball. When we are using long balls and trying to arrive quickly against strong defenders, they are comfortable. We didn’t manage well, the situation.”
With a five-point gap separating ATKMB and MCFC, Sergio Lobera expressed that while they have not given up hope, the situation has gone against them. He opined, “I always believe till the end, but the situation has obviously changed because we depended on us until now, we need to wait for the result on Monday.
“It’s a difficult situation because so far we depended on us. I think ATKMB and Hyderabad is not an easy game and if finally ATK do not win the game, we have the chance again.”