The Blues have now suffered successive defeats for the second time this season.

Bengaluru FC’s hopes of finishing in the top four ended on an abrupt note following their unanticipated 2-1 defeat to NorthEast United, who in turn halted their losing streak against the in-form Blues. With the win, NorthEast United also finally ended their long wait for a victory, stretching to over two months and 10 months. Marco Pezzaiuoli’s side are still mathematically in the race to make the playoffs, but would require miracles apart from also winning their remaining three games.

After the game, Bengaluru FC head coach Marco Pezzaiuoli spoke at the post-match press conference.

Plenty of chances but no finished product

Difficulty in getting back from this loss

With the win heavily denting their playoffs chances, it was hard to digest for Pezzaiuoli and his side, especially after taking the lead. “It doesn’t matter which stage of the game you lose. When you lose you are not happy. The boys are very disappointed in the locker room. Especially, when you see that we were 1-0 up in front of them.

“You need to have better possession and finish the chances that you had. You can score the second and third goal and the game’s almost done. But, we didn’t score and therefore kept the opponent alive. They used one great chance to make it 1-1, from then we opened more and conceded the second goal too early.”

What is the next goal for your side after this Unanticipated result?

“There’s three games left and we want to be in the top four. Now, it’s getting more difficult and we know we need nine points minimum. That’s clear. We will try to get the positives from this game.

“In the first half, we played too many balls backward from the central midfield. I wasn’t happy about this and even the last defending wasn’t on top like we’ve done before. But, in the second half, we created a lot of chances.”

Thoughts on result despite tactical execution

ahead of the match Marco Pezzaiuoli had spoken about not letting the opposition have too much time on the ball — which did happen today. Regardless, the result went against his favour. When asked to share his thoughts on this, he stated, “The ball possession was good, but we played the ball back too many times in the first half.

“We discussed this and found a solution, which you could see in the second half, where we played more forward, created more chances. We only needed to score goals and avoid the opponent’s chances — that’s clear. In football, the opponent always has one or two chances, but we need to score.”

Unavailability of players

Further, Pezzaiuoli was asked if the unavailability of players in his squad was also a factor for this loss. To this, he responded, “No, not at all. I think Lara (Sharma) had a very good game. Parag (Shrivas) is a little bit tired after COVID-19 and a lot of quarantine time.

“He’s played a lot of games in a short time and he’s made some mistakes. So, I don’t look (blame) the other players because we have a good squad and those available are good enough to win this as well as the next three games.

On Jayesh Rane & Yrondu Musavu-King’s return

Concluding the press conference with updates on Jayesh Rane and Yrondu Musavu-King’s return, the 53-year-old stated, “I don’t think both will play this season anymore. They’re injured and out.”

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