Ahead of I-League 2017's first Kolkata Derby, East Bengal head coach Trevor James Morgan sounded optimistic leading his unbeaten side over another win past Mohun Bagan in Siliguri.
Morgan expressed belief on his three foreigners, all of whom are slated to make their 'derby debuts'. ''Willis (Plaza) is an international, Ivan (Bukenya) has played at the top level in South Africa. At the end of the day, it is eleven vs eleven - all the games are the same but circumstances around the game change,'' he said while addressing the media on the eve of the game.
The Englishman added that the derby is only another match and the league is an open book with a lot of pages in to be covered. ''After this game, we have got to play ten games - thirty points available. So many different things happen during the course of a football season"
"Anybody can beat anybody this season and even Shillong Lajong and Aizawl FC are doing well this season. You have got to be the top of your game week in week out,'' he commented.
The 60-year-old took the pressure off of his players as the game being a do-or-die one and blamed the media for creating unwanted hype surrounding it. ''The pressure does not come from us, it comes from the people around. Even Sanjoy (Sen) will agree that tomorrow it is three points. For supporters, it is a special occasion,'' he mentioned.
East Bengal kick-started their season with a 1-1 draw against Khalid Jamil's Aizawl FC side. Ever since the draw, Morgan and company never failed in clinching three points on all occasions.
On being asked what turned around the run of results for the side, the former Dempo SC coach gave an honest assessment.
''In the first game, we had to play in a system which does not suit us because of the people available. Wedson (Anselme) had to play as a striker, which he isn't and after that we had Robin Singh and Willis Plaza coming in and we have found a system which is suiting us,'' he explained.
The former Bournemouth player believes that quality foreign players add to the strength of the team. However, they need to be supported by their team-mates, he mentioned. ''Both teams have good foreigners who can win a game on their day. But to do that, the others need to do their job of making that happen in the team,'' he signed off.