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The Maldivian champions suffered a bitter 3-0 loss at the hands of Churchill brothers, Ismail Anil reflects on missing key players in the squad and how nothing is lost yet..

The second round encounter of group E in the AFC Cup against Churchill brothers didn't turn out the way New Radiant expected to go. An insipid performance in which they didn't really trouble Churchill's defence should be a concern if they have hopes to qualify to the round of 16 as they went down 3-0.

New Radiant were missing the services of Ghanaian defender Jonathon Quartey who didn't travel with the squad due to an injury concern. Ismail Anil, their head coach spoke about the why they suffered such a big defeat and mentioned that his players were tired.

"First and foremost what we recognised is that we don’t have our full defensive line in place and with that in mind we also experienced some fatigue and tiredness on part of the players. We saw the tempo pick up  during the second half and we couldn’t get back into the game.

"We were experiencing injuries in the back-line especially jersey no 13 (Akram Abdul Ghani), the other problem was that there was a visa issue with our foreign defender [Quartey]."

New Radiant and Churchill have a win and a loss each from their two matches with only Indonesia's Persipura Jayapura ahead of the two with a point more. So there is a lot to play in the group and the coach was confident of good results to follow.

"Our club is seeking to dictate the direction of the group will go. We have home and we have away games and if we make necessary preparations we can succeed in dictating where this group is headed," he mentioned.


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