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Delhi Dynamos must trust their youngsters to change their fortunes against Islanders

Written by: Shivam Tiwari


A massive seven points separate Delhi Dynamos from Mumbai City FC as India’s top cities battle it out in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) on Friday evening.

Mumbai City FC will meet struggling Delhi Dynamos in the fourth home game of the season in the Indian Super League. Both the teams have been inconsistent and the coaches demanded more from their team when they met with the media in the pre-match press conference.

Mumbai are coming into the game with confidence after having snatched a win against a hapless NorthEast United. Guimaraes was very happy with the way the team performed in the last match. “The reaction of the players, of the team was very good in terms of getting up after the loss against ATK.”

He added, “The players understood that we have to keep fighting. What games have shown is that every game is going to be very tough. You can never predict anything. Tomorrow's game for us is very tough. It is important to win the second game in a row after losing one.”

Delhi are coming into the game after losing five consecutively The losing streak might give other teams some confidence, but after having seen his side struggle against ATK, who were also on the slide, Guimaraes doesn't want to take any chances and wants his side to give their best. “There is no easy game. No easy game at all. We saw that for ATK to beat them, they had to be very focussed and they only got the advantage in the last ten minutes of the game.”

He also opined, “We have to understand that each game is different and we know that tomorrow we have to fight very hard. If they lose, it will be a very difficult situation for them to recover and knowing that, we are very sure that they will make us work hard. We have to be very focussed without underestimating them.”

Being a coach of a team in India is difficult. You have to help your side by winning games and also have to develop local, young talent in the process. Guimaraes has been doing that very well.  “We're trying to give chances to young players because for Indian football it is important that young players develop.”

He also praised the versatile Abhinas Ruidas, “Ruidas plays from the beginning and he's getting better from day to day. But, he has to better his defensive posture so as to play like a left-back. He's doing well. Last game he attacked very well, firstly by playing as a full-back and later as a winger. So. we are happy that as games go on, he is getting better.”

Mumbai, after seeing some of the biggest names of previous season leave are still a work in process. the Costa Rican has repeatedly insisted that his side is not what it was last year and yet he works to provide the result. “I think we are trying to get most of the players involved by trying different combinations that can produce something very different.”

He added, “In our case, we have tried, in midfield and offense, different kinds of combinations. Sometimes, we play more direct, sometimes we try to play more from the flanks, sometimes more through the centre. As soon as we can get the consistency by winning back-to-back games then we can figure out the combination that we want.”

The Mumbai boss wants fans to come out and motivate the team. He talked about the passion his side has for the game and for the city and its fans. “For Mumbai City FC it is very important to go out there and play our heart out and produce entertainment, making sure that fans love to watch it. I think we have been doing that.”

He continued, “We are achieving something that we understand is important for the city and it's fans. If they can't come to the stadium in Andheri to watch the game, they can watch it on TV. Good football, entertaining football is necessary to make them passionate about the game and the club.”

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Meanwhile, opposing assistant coach Shakti Chauhan says his team are in Mumbai only to win. “It's not about pressure, it's more that it's high time we need to win games and we have come here to win the game.”

Chauhan doesn't see many wrongdoings in his team's performances except for in the final third. “To be very honest, everything has been right. We are keeping the ball, we are doing things right. The only thing that is not working is the kind of thrust we are putting in the final third and that is what we are working on since last week.”

To that effect the Lions' assistant said that improvements have already been smade and it is just a matter of time that they start winning. “If we talk about improvement, then I would say that we are playing the same kind of football and in today's world, a lot of teams work with the help of video analysis and it has proved to be a boon for coaches."

Chauhan is still optimistic about his team's chances and knows what it takes to get back in the top half of the table. When questioned about whether there is pressure on his team he replied, “Definitely all games are very important for us now and the pressure is of winning the games.”

He went on to explain why he is so optimistic about his team's chances.“The format of the league is such that if you win back-to-back two games you are back into contention. If you win three games, you are almost in the top half. We are hoping to start a winning streak from Mumbai.”

Chauhan shrugged off claims that his side has problems at the back. “Of the thirteen goals, we conceded five against Goa and four against Bengaluru. So, except those two games, if you see, we haven't been that bad in defense.”

Midfielder Vinit Rai has impressed all this season and Chauhan is very happy about his performances. “This year we have a lot of youngsters. Vinit is one of the upcoming talents which you can see have the potential to be future superstars. Vinit is there, (Lallianzuala) Chhangte is there. Being young also they come talk to us and take responsibilities.”


Published: Thu Dec 28, 2017 11:47 PM IST



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