Javi Hernandez and Aridai Cabrera scored the goals for the Juggernauts.

Odisha FC, led by Kiko Ramirez had a wonderful start to their season as they beat Bengaluru FC 3-1. This was Bengaluru’s second match of the season. Their first one involved a 4-2 win against NorthEast United.

Odisha took an early lead after midfielder Javi Hernandez took advantage of a poor clearance from Gurpreet Singh Sandhu. The Blues however, equalized with an Alan Costa header from a corner. The team from Bhubaneswar though, restored their lead with a brilliant free-kick from Javi Hernandez. Aridai Cabrera confirmed a victory for the Juggernauts with a third goal deep into injury-time.

After the match, Odisha FC head coach Kiko Ramirez spoke to the media:

Went according to plan

Bengaluru dominated possession throughout the match, especially during the first half. However, the Odisha tactician confirmed that things went according to plan.

“Of course, we wanted to have much time on the ball during the first half. But, we had a plan and we knew the strength and weakness of Bengaluru. It was something we thought of, making fast counter-attacks. Physical condition is important, we wanted to keep the ball. But, the plan was good and the players proved that.”

It’s just the start

Kiko Ramirez emphasised that the win was just the start and they will not get carried away.

“Of course winning is always good but it’s just the start. We have to keep working hard, keep going in this way and the objective is to make Odisha a big club in the Indian Super League. The only way is keep doing like that and working hard in the training.”

On Javi Hernandez

Javi Hernandez scored two brilliant goals for Odisha tonight and so rather unsurprisingly, the Odisha head coach was full of praise for his star midfielder.

“He adapted really well to the team. We are happy and we know that Javi is a goalscorer. He proved that during pre-season and he proved that today.”

Kiko Ramirez further added, “Jonathas (de Jesus) also did a great job and then when Aridai and Liridon (Krasniqi) came on the team improved. So, I am happy with the performance of all the players, also all the Indian players. We are happy with all the Indian players and all the foreigners, every member of the team. It’s a team victory.”

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