Molina, speaking to the media after the match, appeared satisfied with the performance of his players…
“Yes, absolutely happy. I think the only thing that is important is to win. We won the match today. Very tough match if you ask. After last Sunday’s match, a tough match against Chennaiyin, we had to travel a long trip to come here to Kochi without any rest. Not good at all for the team,” Molina said.
He continued: “But we had a great match, a great first half. I think we could have scored some goals. It’s true we have to improve our last pass or finishing touch, try to score more goals. And in the second half we had a maybe lucky goal, similar to what happened in the last match at Kolkata.
“Maybe the luck came back to us and finally we won the match. Really happy with the team, great performance by all the players. Of course we can score more goals, but I’m really happy.”
However, luck seemed to desert ATK when marquee player Helder Postiga suffered an injury in the first half and consequently had to be substituted. Molina shed some more light on the Portuguese striker’s injury. “Well, Helder Postiga had a strong clash with a defender in the first half. He didn’t feel like he wanted to play. Then we decided to substitute him. We will see tomorrow when we go back to Kolkata, we will go to a hospital to do some tests and check how his ribs are. He had a strong clash in the ribs but we will see tomorrow,” he said.
Molina also explained his decision of making Iain Hume and Lara switch their positions following Postiga’s injury. “We felt like we can take advantage of the space in the middle. Javi is better in combinations and we wanted to take advantage of the space in the middle. We interchanged with Hume to come inside the box and try to score. Javi, Borja Fernandez tried to dominate the midfield and I think it worked.”
Molina also admitted that injury to defender Robert Lalthlamuana had forced him to make changes to his team for Wednesday’s game. “Robert didn’t play because he was injured. He had pulled a muscle in his quadriceps. We had to play with Prabir [Das] even though he is a right-back. We had to look for solutions and Prabir was the best solution to us,” the 46-year-old Spaniard said.
Report and Picture Via ISL Media