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Bengaluru v NorthEast United

ISL 2018-19: Carles Cuadrat - We won't change our style after one defeat

15:50 GMT+3 29/01/2019
ATK vs BFC ISL 2018-19
The Bengaluru boss also spoke about slowly integrating the Bengaluru FC B team players to the first team ....

Bengaluru FC tasted the first defeat of their Indian Super League campaign after they went down by a goal in Mumbai last week.

Speaking ahead of their clash against NorthEast United, Bengaluru boss Carles Cuadrat relished the thought of a home game after a break. Rino Anto’s return will be providing a boost to an injury-ridden Bengaluru squad. However, a return date for talisman Miku has not been set.

“We are very happy to be back home again after a long time, and we're sure it will be a nice feeling to be back in front of our supporters. We'll try to put on a good show for them.

“We saw that Sunil (Chhetri) and Udanta (Singh) weren't as fresh as they usually are but it's normal in football after an international break. Most of us have had a long break but these two players have been in action so it's quite normal.”

“As far as injuries are concerned, Rino has recovered well and he should be able to make the squad for tomorrow's game. Nishu and Miku should be available soon after and we're really looking forward to that,” Cuadrat said.

When asked about the first league defeat of the season, Cuadrat was firm that records like these don’t matter and winning the league is what gets you trophies.

“We are fighting for the title, and at the end of the day, that's what we want the most. We were disappointed to lose out on our unbeaten streak but nobody is going to give us a gift for a record, what we want is to make the playoffs.

“NorthEast are a very tough team and have had a good season so far. For them, tomorrow's clash is an important one and I'm sure they'll put on a tough show. They have good strikers in (Federico) Gallego and (Bartholomew) Ogbeche. We have to try and take advantage of our opportunities to win the game.

"I'm sure it will be a good game for the supporters. Until now we have been working in a way which, fortunately, has been giving us good results. We'll continue to work hard and try to win every game.”

When asked if he will abandon his brand of football to grind out results, Cuadrat said, “We believe in the kind of football that we love and I am lucky to have the kind of players I need to play that kind of football. We have some quality players and I am able to build from the back.

"We saw how NorthEast took the lead in the away game and did well to protect it for a long time. But our plan was the same then and it is the same now. We are not going to change that.

“We are a very competitive team and it's something I love about this club. It is one of the reasons I took the role as Head Coach here. Losing the game was tough, but when you think that our last loss in the league stages of the competition was over a year ago, it shows how dominant we have been. We have made good numbers for ourselves and it has made us strong mentally. That confidence is something that our squad takes advantage of and I am sure it will continue.

“Ogbeche, Corominas, Sogou are all fantastic strikers and important players for their teams. We have played a lot of games without Miku, and we've managed to grind out results so I am very happy. I am happy to be atop the league, with a game in hand and despite being without an important player for a while. My squad is working hard and I am very satisfied with their performances and their attitude.”

With a playoff spot virtually in the bag, Bengaluru could offer players from the academy an opportunity to make a name for themselves. But Cuadrat does not want to rush them and will be easing their transition to the first team.

“I come with a kind of philosophy that protects the young players and to make sure that they have a good way to the top. Sometimes you see young players who are given chance after chance and if they don't make much of it, they don't make it at all.

"In Barcelona, there is a player named Aleñá, who is being developed slowly; step by step. That is my plan with the young players from the BFC B team and I am certain that it will work. I want to ensure that every player is given the right opportunity to develop and make their mark on the first team,” Cuadrat concluded.