I-League 2017: Bengaluru FC's Albert Roca - 'East Bengal created chances with long balls'

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The Bengaluru FC gaffer rued his side's inability to deal with East Bengal's long balls and denied that Robin Singh changed the game for his opponents

Bengaluru FC coach Albert Roca felt that long balls were his defence's problem on the night after suffering a 2-1 reverse in Kolkata against East Bengal. He went on to express his disappointment at conceding the equaliser through a set piece routine which saw Bukenya tap in from close range. 

"First of all, congratulations to East Bengal for the win. I think it was a nice game for the viewers. Both teams created chances to score. In the first half, we were in control until the goal which came on a set piece. It is a shame because we practised set pieces a lot," he said. 

REPORT: East Bengal 2-1 Bengaluru FC

"In the second half, it was again the same but we conceded some easy counterattacks. Also we have to check the long balls. They created many chances with just long balls. So we did not control the game. Our style of play is to control the ball and play but today it was a clash between 2 different styles. I'm proud of my team. They created many chances so I guess it is natural their coach will say they deserved the win," he added. 

The Spanish gaffer also conceded that some of his players were tired as the game went on, allowing East Bengal's pacy forwards to create chances at will. He explained, "Our intention was to push up but some of our players were a bit tired and they took advantage of us. But it is true that they had better opportunities before the goal. We need to look at us and resolve what has happened. But my team had a good attitude and they managed the game well. But the other team took advantages of our mistakes in certain moments. That's football."

Morgan: First 15 minutes were tough

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The former Barcelona assistant coach, however, denied that the introduction of ex-Bengaluru FC striker Robin Singh, who notched the match-winner, in the second half was what turned the tide for Trevor Morgan's side. He claimed, "Robin was there. He is a good player and he took advantage of our bad moments. Congratulations to him for scoring the goal but I don't think he was the game changer."

"We tried to keep possession even in the second half. That's how we want to play Today was not good for us but we expect to win more games with this style. Of course, we have to keep working," he acknowledged. 

The 54-year-old defended the positioning of Sunil Chhetri out wide and pointed out that the 32-year-old had made significant contributions while operating from that position in the past. "He is good everywhere. He is one of the best players in the history of Indian football. He played today on the left side as a winger in a 4-2-3-1. He has good qualities and he helped us in the AFC Cup in the same position. So, he can play everywhere," he concluded.  

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