The Chennai coach is optimistic ahead of the game against the Northeast club…

Charles Raja refused to acknowledge the difference in quality, stating the points gap would not influence the result of the game after hyping up the work of his Aizawl counterpart and Mumbai legend Khalid Jamil, who has been managing in the I-League since 2009. He stated: “With Khalid Jamil’s experience after numerous I-League seasons with Mumbai, Aizawl [are doing well] after he took over. When we look at the points table, it looks a threat. However, inside the field, we will definitely do well. [Scoring] goals was our problem; we need goals. We’ve scored only one. We’re definitely getting better. We will do well [on Saturday night].”

Chennai City claimed their first top-flight goal against Mohun Bagan through Marcos Vinicius on January 21 although they proceeded to lose the game 2-1. Their performance oozed cohesion for a new side. The Chennai-born coach acknowledged the improvement in team chemistry though he mourned the lack of time for pre-season preparation.

“More than confidence, I should say that the boys are getting together. We lacked time [for preparation]. We had a very good game against Mohun Bagan, but at the end of the day, the result matters. We were a bit worried. We should do well tomorrow, definitely,” he said.

Quizzed about the potential I-League-Indian Super League merger, he jokingly stated that the Aizawl manager should hold more information than he did, with Aizawl being closer to Delhi.

New signing Raegan Albarnas accompanied the manager, and he claimed to be gelling with the rest of the team after facing minor struggles in the first few days. He also claimed to be polishing his talent in a competitive atmosphere after spending the majority of his career in the CFA League.

Having earned just a solitary point so far, they will eye a win against Aizawl to boost their chances of securing a strong finish in the club’s first I-League season.