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Guimaraes revels in versatile players, Lobera continues to back Kattimani

Written by: Shivam Tiwari


The Goa boss felt his team were hard done by to not get something from the match.

Mumbai City FC edged past FC Goa 2-1 in a gruelling affair at the Mumbai Football Arena on Saturday. Everton Santos opened the scoring for the home side while Thiago Santos scored the winner for the Islanders. Manuel Arana Rodriguez scored the only goal for the away team who lost after giving a good account of themselves in the match.

Given the result went in Mumbai’s favour even after Goa did everything they could to get something out of this away fixture, FC Goa coach Sergio Lobera didn’t feel well about quite a few in the post-match press conference. The referee's decisions being one of them.

When asked about the team’s performance Lobera said, “The sensation is great obviously because I don’t think this was a game we deserved to lose. Particularly the second half was very much open where we created a lot of chances for ourselves. But unfortunately, the way it turned out is we don’t have the points.”

Although the away team performed so well that they looked more like the home team, the performance of their captain, Laxmikant Kattimani was again sub-par. During the post-match press conference of the game against Chennaiyin FC, Lobera defended his captain by claiming him to be the league’s best goalkeeper. So, he was questioned whether he would still stand by his words. Lobera answered that he has faith in his player and pointed to the referee’s mistakes.

He said, “If we start analysing individual mistakes, if it wasn’t due to the referee, we wouldn’t have lost the game. What I want to say is that the referee got confused and committed a mistake, like everyone is capable of committing a mistake. He called offside for a goal that was actually in. Everyone is capable of making errors and if you are going talk about making individual errors than he is one of them.”

About Kattimani he said, “Like I said last week, I would continue to rate Kattimani as the best goalkeeper in the league. I am very proud of my players and the kind of performances they put in. Despite the tough result and the tough showing, I completely have faith in him. I am focussing on improving ourselves as we go through the season.”

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The most important thing is my players feel comfortable, says Mumbai City coach...

Mumbai City FC played a good game finally after a below-par performance against Bengaluru FC at last time out. The Mumbai coach Alexander Guimaraes was pleased with the win. He said, “I think we saw today a totally different face of what Mumbai City has been and we fight very hard to get this win. The the game was like when we think about a tough game. But, I also think that this is the type of game that the ISL needs for the promotion of football in India.”

The game saw a lot of Mumbai players like Gerson Vieira playing out of position, Sehnaj Singh played as a right-back and Abhinas Ruidas played as a left-back. When questioned whether it was something in the wake of him working on the players' versatility Guimaraes explained, “First of all we have to understand that unfortunately, we had two situations during pre-season, with the injury of Aiborlang (Khongjee) and with the injury of Davinder (Singh), so that hurt us very much because I had to make some adjustments of my idea in terms of players and their positions.”

He also added, “But, I feel that last season too, we managed to and Sehnaj managed to play well in that particular position. I am very satisfied in terms of how Ruidas is trying to be strong in his defensive game like he showed today. Gerson is a multiple position player. He can play in midfield and also at the back. The most important thing is that they feel comfortable. If they don’t feel comfortable, I know that they will surely tell me that they can’t play there.”


Published: Sun Nov 26, 2017 04:04 PM IST


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