The tactician saw his side fall to a seventh defeat of the season.

Odisha FC’s Indian Super League season has gone from bad to worse. Following two positive results in the last couple of games, Stuart Baxter and his boys went down against Chennaiyin FC by a score of 2-1, thanks to a brace from Esmael Goncalves.

Stuart Baxter made a few changes to the lineup from the last game against the Marina Machans, but could not manage to steer his team to a victory. The coach spoke during the post-match interaction and answered some gripping questions in relation to the game and his team.

The unpleasant start

The tactician was asked if the game was lost in the early stages due to two quickfire goals from the opposition. He responded, “I am not really happy with the manner we started the game. We started the game by playing everything long and not getting the ball down to play within our shape. I thought the response was okay in the first half and the response in the second half was very good. I thought we were unlucky not to get something out of the game in the finish.”

Unforced errors

The tactician also explained how the first two goals were more about their own mistakes rather than the opposition’s brilliance. He said, “The goals came from our mistakes. I don’t think we were in a lot of trouble apart from that. It was an even game for the rest of the half. In the second half, we played good football, got into dangerous situations.”

Gaurav Bora’s performance

The 67-year-old made four changes to the lineup due to the unavailability of Jacob Tratt. He was asked if Gaurav Bora is finding it hard to adapt to a new set of demands. He answered by saying, “He had an outstanding game last time out and as a young player, sometimes coping with success is as difficult as coping with failure.

Watch: ISL 2020-21 | Stuart Baxter Post Match Press Conference | Odisha FC Vs Chennaiyin FC

“After making the mistakes in the first half, it was a strong character that played in the second half. I hope in the future, he does not need that mistake to spur him on,” the tactician further added about the defender.

Bora and Sarangi’s suspensions

Both Bora and Shubham Sarangi will be out for the next game due to suspensions as a result of accumulated yellow cards. Speaking in the context of how he will manage the disadvantage, Baxter said, “We have to go to an already quite thin squad, but everybody that comes in, they give their all. We can tweak the way we play slightly, but I don’t think we are going to be making massive changes.”

Marcelinho’s future

Perhaps the most important question that’s on everyone’s mind will be whether this was Marcelinho’s last appearance under Baxter. The winger has not been favored by the coach and the disappointing performance by the Brazilian in the first half justified his axing. 

Speaking on the prospect of this being Marcelinho’s last game under his leadership, Stuart Baxter said, “It would be vastly unfair to say that because I’ve had a player that has worked very hard. He’s not been fit, he’s not been ready to play. He got a chance tonight and he did the best he could do on the back of us giving away two goals.

“Marcelinho will continue to be competitive, and I will always pick the players that I think are best for that game.” he further added. 

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