Despite the defending I-League champions succumbing to one of their heaviest defeats ever, being thumped 5-1 by Pune FC in Goa, Dempo manager Armando Colaco remained upbeat about his sides' chances this season.
"At least for me, I asked the boys to forget about this game. These things happened in the past also. Big teams like Arsenal, Real Madrid, even Barcelona have lost. Pune is also a good team. We always have a tough time with them. They played very well. Things would have been different if we had utilised the chances that we had in the first three or five minutes, but then forget it," said Colaco.
The Dempo coach stressed that his players should move on from this defeat, going on to absolve them of any blame and decided not to be too critical of his wards.
"It's a game. Only thing is I hope that the boys re-group and come back again into the game. As far as I know, I've been with them (Dempo) for so many years and I know that the boys will definitely bounce back," he added.
On being asked as to how his team conceded five in Goa given that they always dominate the visiting sides, Colaco pointed toward the injury to experienced defender Mahesh Gawli.
When I lost Mahesh [Gawli], I knew that things would be bad for me. As I was missing Mahesh and Cresson [Antao] who has a shoulder injury, I said why not put young Shallum [Pires] and give him a chance. I had no other alternatives."
"We lost like that - 6-1 to Mohun Bagan, 5-0 (win) against Mohun Bagan in Calcutta was when we hammered them the year after. These things happen in a game. Even the 3-1 score (defeat) against ONGC was because we conceded one goal, (and so) we went out in attack and got (conceded) another one," he signed off.
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