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ISL 2019-20: Josep Gombau: Nandhakumar can be a good player for India

18:14 WAT 28/11/2019
Odisha FC
The former Kitchee SC coach explained why he brought on midfielder Bikramjit Singh to replace Vinit Rai…

Odisha FC managed to comeback twice as they held Chennaiyin FC 2-2 at the Marina Arena in what was a thrilling game of football.

Coach Josep Gombau explained that he will stick to his principles of playing an expansive brand of football and wouldn’t compromise on this at any cost. He spoke on why he doesn’t prefer to sit back and hit on the counter.

“I prefer not to win a game and play my kind of football than sit back and win with a goal. We are not doing wrong. We play good football and experience. We have all such things. But I am such a coach. I don’t want to sit back and just play to avoid and wait for the mistake from the opponent. When Carlos was injured, I played three at the back. We are not doing things wrong. We are playing young players. This is the way I am as a coach and I don’t want to change this for anything,” said the Spaniard.

He also heaped praise on Nandhakumar Sekar, who was playing in his home state of Tamil Nadu and backed him to come good and fulfil his potential.

“Nandha is a very important player. He is young and has a lot of potential. We always play with young players. He can improve but I am satisfied with him. He can be a key player for India. He comes from a humble background and is a good person,” he mentioned.

Gombau expressed his disappointment that his team had to split points with Chennaiyin FC, who struggled to create any chance of note in the first 45 minutes.

“We are disappointed with the result. In the second half, it was an open game with both teams attacking. We did not want that and wanted control. The first half was very different. We created chances but could not score. We controlled the game. Maybe if we had scored, we could have won. Chennaiyin did not create anything in the first half. 

“Vinit had a yellow card and I wanted Bikramjit because he has a lot of experience. But after that one mistake in the midfield, we lost a goal. The good thing is that even when we were losing, the team kept the composure to score again. But we had Carlos (Delgado) injury and Marcos (Tebar) was not feeling very well before the game. But we scored the second goal. We had the mentality to attack and bring at least a point. We should’ve won the game,” he opined.

Aridane Santana scored the second goal for Odisha FC late in the game which helped them pick a point.

“Santana is a high quality player. He has terrific finishing but he creates and plays between the lines. I am happy with his performances. He also interacts and teaches his teammates. When you have to play my kind of football, it is not easy. You try to play from the back. We play without wingers. Our goals come from elaborate attacking patterns. Today’s football was a game of mistakes. The team which makes less errors win. We don’t score from transitions because that is for coaches who want to sit back and then attack. I am not that kind of coach,” he elaborated on his coaching principles.