Mahmoud Al Amna scored the winner for the Red and Gold Brigade.
Mumbai City FC failed to get over the East Bengal hurdle as they succumbed to a 2-1 defeat in the penultimate pre-quarterfinal of the Hero Super Cup on Thursday at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. Katsumi Yusa and Mahmoud Al Amna were the heroes of the night for the Hero I-League giants, who ensured their club secure a quarter-final berth after initially falling behind to Achille Emana’s brilliant free-kick.
Present from the winning side in the post-match press conference was head coach Khalid Jamil, who was in a buoyant mood and was delighted with the effort the players had put in the match. “It was a good match. Everyone worked hard, Al Amna scored the winning goal and we played as a team,” he began.
The 40-year old further went on to throw light on what the overall strategy was through the course of the game. “All was good as everyone worked really hard. When the match started, we were keeping possession. We tried to play defensive and counter-attack whenever the chance arose. I am happy that the team took advantage of whatever chances came their way. I also didn’t make any changes as everyone on the field was playing really well,” he stated.
From the opponent camp, Mumbai’s head coach Alexandre Guimaraes was present to take questions from the media and shared his views on the outcome of the match. “I think we played a very good game,” he inferred. “The rivals took advantage of the two situations they had and they scored. So now it’s a matter of planning what’s next for Mumbai City FC. I congratulate East Bengal for the win.”
The Costa Rican is a part of the Islanders camp since 2016 and has been a close audience of how football has grown in the country in the past two years. When asked how it feels to be a part of the developmental phase of Indian football, the 58-year old shared, “It’s great. It’s my second season here in India and through this tournament, we can also make an idea of the other players in the I-League. So I think, it has been a very interesting learning experience for me. I am very glad to be here and work for the development of Indian football.”