In a quest to register their fifth win on the trot, the Red and Golds face Churchill Brothers on Sunday in Kolkata. A win against the Goan club would take them to the second position on the league table, tied on points with leaders Chennai City FC.
The Spanish coach of East Bengal though suggested that he will in no way allow complacency to creep in among his players.
The Spaniard said, “I think now we have the confidence but not overconfidence. When we analyse the matches, we make sure we control the overconfidence of the players if there is any. We are preparing for them to do well in all the coming matches.”
Menendez also refuted suggestions that he has special plans to stop Churchill's star striker Willis Plaza.
“We have our plans set to win against Churchill Brothers team and not Willis Plaza alone. I prepare for winning matches and when I prepare the defence it is to counter a whole team and not just one player,” said the East Bengal coach.
On facing Churchill Brothers, the former Real Madrid Castilla manager cautiously suggested, “This is a difficult team. They have always been very close to the top of the table and they score very easily. If a team scores a lot they are always a dangerous team.”
Churchill boss Petre Gigiu has already given up on the title despite Churchill sitting only a point behind East Bengal. He said, “We will of course play and try to do well but the spirit is not the same as before. We lost many points in the last three games and at the same time, we did not have the best XI.
“For this match, we don’t have Hussein Eldor, Dawda Ceesay, N Mohanraj and Richard Costa. We have many players absent. But we will try to do our best. We have a very good team in front of us tomorrow. We will play for the spectators.
“We will try our best for sure but now it is very difficult for us to recuperate. We have only three games left but East Bengal have five matches to go.”
Gigiu further added, “I cannot say exactly what happened to us. Maybe the pressure on us was too much and we were not prepared enough to become champions this season.”
The Romanian coach showed great respect for their opposition East Bengal and praised them wholeheartedly ahead of the match. He said, “Collectively ,East Bengal are very strong. They have very good players, very good foreigners. They play as a group and that is their strength.”