ISL 2018-19: Kerala Blasters' Nelo Vingada - Our defence controlled the game

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ISL Media
The Portuguese manager indicated that the Kochi-based side would not do any further business in the current transfer window...

Nelo Vingada, on his return to the Indian Super League (ISL) with his new side Kerala Blasters, was held to a 1-1 draw at home by ATK on Friday.

The turnout for the game was quite poor with only 4582 spectators in the stands as the Yellows have now gone a whole year without a win at home.

However, the 65-year-old was confident that the otherwise vociferous supporters of Kerala Blasters would throng the stadium in future games thanks to the refreshed style of play.

He said, "Thanks to Manjappada and people who came to the stadium The support was fantastic. I regret not seeing more. But if we play like today, they will come again. We did a lot of good things that maybe I could not expect two-three days after my arrival.

"Our defence controlled the game. Only maybe the first 15 mins of the second half were not good for the level of the team. We recovered in the situation and scored almost in the last minute."

Commenting on the current poor home record of the two-time runners-up, the former NorthEast United manager stated, "The players are human beings. Even in the last games, many defeats. By winning one or two games, the confidence will come back. Many things that they did today are coming from the past."

He also paid tribute to his predecessor David James' work with the team who was sacked last month. "I have to respect David James. I did not change many things. I continued his job. I felt the team was comfortable. Win and the confidence will come back," he said.

Edu garcia ATK

Both goals in the game came in final ten minutes and it was ATK's Edu Garcia who converted from a set-piece first to break the deadlock before Vingada's side equalised late through an ATK own-goal.

When asked if there was some psychological factor behind his team unable to see off games and conceding goals late, the former Asian Cup winning-coach instead chose to praise the efforts of Garcia's individual brilliance from the freekick.

"The goal was by a free-kick, the player was very smart. This player was very smart. No chance for the goalkeeper. I believe."

The former Selecoes boss also indicated that he would not be able to bring any more players in the current transfer window to fill in for Zakeer Mundampara, who remains suspended till the summer.

"Zakeer was the natural sub for Nikola (Krcmarevic). It is an important loss. To be honest, in the market, I was talking with my staff, it is difficult to bring a player like Zakeer because, in the market, other clubs will not give us players. Maybe I have to bring the youngsters. I feel it (new signings) is not easy," he concluded.

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