The tactician also praised the efforts of his team in the second half in the loss against Odisha FC.

NorthEast United were beaten 0-2 by Odisha FC at the JLN Stadium in Fatorda on Tuesday night. Two early first half goals from Daniel Lalhlimpuia and Aridai Cabrera sealed the deal for the Juggernauts. Khalid Jamil’s side came out all guns blazing in the second half, but couldn’t fill the deficit and ended up on the losing side.

Things have only taken a downward slope for Jamil’s NorthEast United of late. They were not allowed to train for the previous four days due to a COVID-19 scare in their camp. A lack of practice was clearly visible as they looked out of sync for majority of the game. Moreover, the unavailability of key players due to injuries added a bit more to their long list of problems.

Following the match, head coach Khalid Jamil spoke to the press and shared his thoughts on the game, playoff aspirations and the defence.

NorthEast United vs Odisha FC | Khalid Jamil post-match press-conference

Thoughts on the game

Odisha FC dominated the majority of the game and emerged victorious at the end. But Khalid Jamil felt his side had enough chances to score in the second half.

“We were not in a good shape in the beginning as we played differently in the first 25 minutes. Everybody tried in the second half, but we couldn’t get the goals,” he began.

On his side’s vulnerable defence

Questions were yet again raised on NorthEast United’s defence as they leaked two goals. Khalid Jamil was asked if his defence let him down once again.

“You cannot say that. You just cannot blame the defenders as there are midfielders and strikers too,” the tactician quipped.

“We missed some players like (Deshorn) Brown and had to change the positions of some players. But everybody tried in the second half,” he remarked.

Playoffs aspirations

As the hopes to qualify for the playoff spots are fading with each passing day, there are no room for complacency for the Highlanders. The head coach was quizzed if his side can still make it to playoffs this season and Khalid Jamil remained hopeful.

“Yes, why not? Anything can happen in football, but looking at the situation we need to work hard,” he signed off.

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