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Lobera says defensive frailties could cost top four spot, Grant praises impact substitutes

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The two teams split the points after an entertaining draw.

FC Goa played out a 2-2 draw against NorthEast United FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa on Sunday. Mandar Rao Dessai opened the scoring on the night but Marcinho equalised just before half-time. Ferran Corominas then put Goa in front again in the second period, however, substitute John Mosquera’s leveller ensured the teams shared the spoils.

Speaking to the media after the game was Goa head coach, Sergio Lobera. “No, I can’t be happy with the one point at home, particularly because it was at home. Here we wanted to try and get all three points.

The Gaurs conceded soon after taking the lead in the opening period, which continued their record of failing to keep a clean sheet this season. When quizzed on Goa’s mindset, Lobera said: “After scoring a goal, we should have been a little more attentive to ensure we don’t concede as easily as we did. We normally concede goals because we take a lot of risks, but today, that wasn’t the case. We need to stop conceding goals and if we want to be in the top four, this cannot happen. We can’t be so open.”

Brandon Fernandes had to be replaced after picking up a knock in the first half and Lobera provided an update on the Indian winger after the final-whistle. “It is a little difficult to diagnose right away because we didn’t have a chance to look at it properly yet. We have to go and find out what exactly it is. Maybe (we’ll) have two-three tests and (then) understand what exactly the problem is,” he said.


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Meanwhile, the Highlanders’ head coach Avram Grant, said: “It was a good game, good quality with a lot of chances. We played very well in the first half. We didn’t let them create even one chance, We defended well and then we attacked very well. We created chances and scored at 1-1. When we were 2-2, we had a chance to score again but the opportunity was not taken.”

When asked about substitute John Mosquera, who ensured the Highlanders’ split the points, Grant said: “John is a very good player. I think we brought two very good players on, (Maic Namputu) Sema and John. Sema didn’t play today because we could fit only five foreigners, but he is a better player than most. John is a very good striker, but his fitness is not so good. He did his job as a striker. We know we don’t have too much time, only a month and a lot of games, so let’s see how the squad performs.”

Published: Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:51 AM IST

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