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The United Sikkim FC coach put up a brave face after a morale squashing defeat against Prayag United, and vowed to bounce back...

Philippe De Ridder's United Sikkim FC slumped to a 10-1 defeat at the hands of Prayag United with Ranti Martins running riot, having scored five and assisted three goals.

De Ridder meanwhile put up a brave face when asked to comment on why his team slumped to such a defeat in spite of their promising performances so far in the season.

"Prayag really played well. For us, four or five key players were missing especially when it came to the back line, as Rahul (Jaiswal) and Safar (Sardar) were certainly not first choice defenders and hence the result," he reasoned.

On asked whether the damning defeat will have an adverse effect on the team's morale, De Ridder was optimistic enough to say that he would have no trouble to motivate his players as this would serve as a wake up call for the team.

"I am sure we can bounce back. Key players will be back in our defense. This defeat can serve as a wake up call for the whole team. Every team goes through a bad patch but I am sure we can recover. Yes, the boys will not be able to perhaps sleep well, after this defeat but we will take this on our chin and move on."

The United Sikkim manager also conceded that it was the first time in his life that any team he has coached or played in has conceded ten goals.

De Ridder was full of praise for Ranti Martins who was on song against his side.

"Ranti Martins was very good and very efficient. Even worse for us, today everything clicked for him as he buried all his chances with ease."

However, De Ridder was obstinate enough to discount any reasons for resigning as he was clear that one bad day does not change anything. He instead pointed towards the great start his side had, as they had beaten Salgaocar FC in their very first match.

"Why should I resign after one bad performance? Will you (to the reporters) resign after writing one bad article? Who said a small team like us could beat Salgaocar. Also in that match against Dempo SC we could have easily had a point against them, if not for that contentious penalty."

De Ridder ended with heaping praise on the Prayag United side who looked a refreshed bunch under new coach Eelco Schattorie.

"Prayag played fantastic today. They had a new coach and that motivated them especially after their unexpected loss against Shillong Lajong FC. But I have complete faith in my boys. They will bounce back. It's like life. Something bad happens and you need to turn the page and hope for the best."

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