Following the 1-1 draw against United Sports Club, Mohammedan Sporting’s fortunes haven’t changed much as they occupy the bottom spot in the league standings. With just four matches to go, they face East Bengal, Shillong Lajong and Rangdajied United at home before their final away trip to Mumbai FC.
“Yes, it has become a tough challenge now. However, we have to fight till the last match. Every game is a do or die match for us from today and I will try to bear the responsibility the officials have handed me,” said coach Sanjoy Sen who until last week didn’t wish to press the panic button just yet.
Sen launched a veiled criticism of United SC for not going for a win and instead choosing to sit back.
“It was always hard to win against a team that never tried for a win. We played attacking football throughout but they sat back in their own half. However, I don't criticize them for that. They also are in a tough phase and I know it's hard to risk losing a point going all out for a win. Even we could not attack with full force since a point is too valuable in these circumstances.”
The Mohammedan coach has worked in the past as an understudy to Subrata Bhattacharya, the technical director of United SC. Sen denied that the game was a chance to settle personal scores.
“It was not a fight between us. It was a match between two struggling sides. We talked after the match as well.”
Mohammedan have scored the least number of goals in the league and Sen acknowledged that they are facing a problem upfront.
“We have problems in the attacking front and we have to live with that. I exactly know the problems but with a few matches yet to be played, I won't discuss them here. Though we have won two tournaments (Durand Cup and IFA Shield) this year, we have lacked consistency and have never won three consecutive matches. So, we need to be on our toes in the remaining matches."
The match was played in searing temperatures but Sen refused to put the blame on the weather conditions.
“I will not use the weather as an excuse. Both the teams had to perform under the heat. I was impressed by how a player like Taro Hasegawa, who came from Japan could continue for 85 minutes in this high temperature.”
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