Pailan Arrows came from a goal down to hold Air India to a 1-1 draw at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune, thereby ending their 5 game losing streak.
Arthur Papas was a content man after the game and was quick to compliment his players. He commented, “I am very happy with the performance and I think we had excellent opportunities in the first half. Seiminlen (Doungel) will take some time to get used to our way of playing, but he is a good option for us upfront. The wing-play from Holicharan Narzary and Rajinder Kumar was excellent.”
Giving his take on the game, Papas stated, “We conceded a silly goal, which saw Air India score with virtually their only shot at goal, but at the same time we showed excellent fighting spirit with Rajinder scoring an excellent goal.”
“First five minutes of the second half we were under pressure, but then we settled down. For the sending off, it was a bit clumsy from Narzary, but am sure there was no bad intent and he was trying to win the ball back and over-stretched on the tackle,” the Australian continued.
“But we showed great fighting spirit, they had a couple of chances which they were always going to have, but we too could have got something, if we were better with the final passes,” added the Pailan Arrows coach.
Papas also refused to blame Doungel for a sitter he missed early in the first half, and felt the player would improve with more gametime.
“We have had chances in every game so far and there hasn't been a game where we haven’t had any. It’s about getting better in-front of goal, being calm and also improving the quality of the final ball. A lot of the teams that do well here (in India) is thanks to the foreign players but what we are doing here (at Pailan Arrows) is improving the Indian players in the final third. Doungel has a fantastic attitude and will get better.”
While the Arrows have gone through a lean patch recently, the Australian stressed on how proud he was of his side’s displays in the last few games. He told Goal.com, “I was not overly fussed about it as we played all the top teams and although our results haven’t looked good, our performances have been nice.”
“It has been a tough 5 games for the players where we have played all the top sides, we have been on the road for 13 days and I am really proud of them,” he concluded.
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