The Blues manager spoke after his side made it to the last four of the AFC Cup thanks to a goalless draw in Singapore….

Indian champions Bengaluru FC made it to the semi-finals of the AFC Cup for the first time in their history after holding Tampines Rovers to a goalless draw in Singapore yesterday. The Indian side advanced 1-0 on aggregate and speaking after the game manager Albert Roca was pleased with the way his team approached the tie on the whole.

“It was a tough game. Tampines are a good team with very good players who can make a difference but we were prepared for that. It was difficult, but if you look over the two fixtures we have created more opportunities and kept control of both games for most parts and we deserve to pass through to the semi-finals,” Roca said.

The Spaniard further added, “We tried to be better in some aspects and to read more of the game. Some of our players are young and yet they make good decisions on the field. We haven’t conceded a goal in two games, which is a good sign.”

Bengaluru’s defensive discipline again came to the fore as they progressed with a gritty and organized display at the back in a tricky away game. But, rather than praising his defenders alone Roca lauded the cohesive effort of his team who worked as a unit from back to front.

Goalkeeper Amrinder Singh produced another good display between the sticks and the former Barcelona man appreciated that though his shot-stopper was a spectator for large parts of the game, he was solid when he needed to be.

Bengaluru will now go into the semi-finals in buoyant mood. However, with the I-League season long finished they will once again have to overcome the lack of competitive football in the lead up to that tie and Roca is concerned about the impact this factor might have on his side’s performance. “The semi-final is surely going to be even harder. We are not competing in the domestic league and have had only two official games in three and a half months. It makes things difficult with regards to how physical the team will be but we’ll stay positive. The team has shown that they are competitive and we’ll show more of that in a bid to make it to the final.

Report by Khel Now-Content Editor Mrunal Nakashe. A sports buff, he’s also a foreign policy enthusiast and keen North Korea watcher. Mrunal loves gaming, reading, traveling and is a self-confessed Football Manager addict. You can follow him on Twitter.