Churchill Brothers coach Mariano Dias was one disappointed man at the end of their I-League game against Sporting Club de Goa over the weekend. With an attack minded line up that contained the trio of Beto, Henry Antchouet and Akram Moghrabi, the Goan side had gone for all three points but instead were left empty handed as they lost by a narrow 1-0 margin.
Churchill Brothers were down to 10 men early in the second half when centre-half Dharmaraj Ravanan was given his marching orders after a second bookable offence. This compounded the defensive woes of the Red Machine as the club recently had to let go of their star defender Bilal Najarine who has departed for the riches of the United Arab Emirates.
"We played very badly, and the loss of our defender added to our woes. To be frank, overall, nothing was fair. You see, our goalkeeper (Sandip Nandy) had the ball in his hand, with the opposition players still attempting to kick it. The referee was allowing this to happen. But I was not happy overall," said an upset Mariano Dias when asked where his side were cost the game.
"Their players were tackling from behind on every occasion, but overall we did not play well," he continued.
When asked particularly about the reason Beto started behind the two strikers, Dias quipped, "Beto always starts from midfield and then goes up (supporting the striker)"
Churchill Brothers are now placed second in the table behind East Bengal. However they do have two games in hand. Dias opined that dips in form are bound to happen in a marathon league, however the key is to bounce back soon. "We did not click like in previous matches and it felt like we didn’t have the confidence to play. In football there are ups and downs, somebody will win and some will lose. So nobody is sure when things can go wrong," said the Churchill gaffer.