ISL 2018-19: Bengaluru FC's Carles Cuadrat - Don't think ATK pressurised us

The Spaniard compared BFC's reunion with former defender John Johnson's to meeting an ex-girlfriend...

Bengaluru FC’s unbeaten streak remained untouched as they defeated ATK 1-0 in an Indian Super League (ISL) clash on Thursday at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium.

Erik Paartalu scored the only goal of the match in the 37th minute to seal three points for his side.

On the match against ATK, Bengaluru coach Carles Cuadrat opined, “ATK had to win today’s match so they went all out and they had to create the chances. We also created some chances. We got chances to score the second goal. It has been a nice game for the supporters. In the end the three points matter. I don’t think they pressurised us too much.”

The Bengaluru backline was exposed on quite a few occasions today and ATK had got several chances to score goals but they squandered them.

On the Bengaluru backline underperforming, coach Cuadrat suggested, “We have been working on these four defenders throughout the season and they have played in most of the matches. So if you have to change two players in the match the mechanics get disrupted. It happens in every country, every team in the world.

"These four defenders (Rahul Bheke, Juanan, Albert Serran and Nishu Kumar) have done very well. You can see how many times the opposition has been given offside. The offside trapping has been great. So when you put two new players there can be some problems.”

Bengaluru Kolkata ISL

The Spanish coach gave an update on Nishu Kumar and Rino Anto’s injuries. He said, “It looks like Rino (Anto) had a hamstring muscle problem and normally a player is out for about one month. Nishu had a knee problem and normally it is ligament so he has to go to the hospital and check what has really happened.”

Rahul Bheke’s exclusion from Stephen Constantine’s 34-man probable Indian squad for the Asian Cup 2019 has been a hot topic of debate among the fans.

On Bheke not getting a call in the Indian team, the Bengaluru boss opined, “I think all the football fans in India have the feeling that Rahul Bheke is one of the best players in his position. But the national team coach is taking the decisions and maybe he has some other plans so we have to respect his decision.”

Former Bengaluru FC defender John Johnson returned to the city with the ATK camp. After plying his trade with the Blues for five seasons, the former Middlesbrough FC defender joined the Kolkata club this year.

On Johnson’s return, Cuadrat quipped, “When you see an ex-girlfriend you really loved for a long time, the feeling is same. Everybody loves him (John Johnson). He is a great guy and a wonderful professional. We would have loved to have him in the team for sure but as I said earlier it was his decision and we have to respect that.”