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Indian Super League

Jamshedpur FC’s Antonio Iriondo happy to play youngsters

9:43 PM GMT+4 06/02/2020
Mumbai City vs Jamshedpur
Iriondo had approached Subhasish Bose after the match and told him that the defender should have asked about Piti’s condition...

Jamshedpur FC’s dreams of making it to the playoffs ended on Thursday when they went down 1-2 to Mumbai City FC at the Mumbai Football Arena.

The Men of Steel had taken the lead in the first half but the visitors came back from behind to score twice and seal the fate of the match.

Antonio Iriondo had deployed two young Indian players Aniket Jadhav and Farukh Chaudhary on the flanks and tried to hit Mumbai with pace. Even though the strategy worked in the first half, the two players had to be substituted in the second half due to fatigue.

Explaining his tactics, the Spanish manager said, “The plan was to come through both the flanks with Aniketh Jadhav and Farukh Chaudhary. They tried to use their speed but in the end, it didn’t work that well. I had to substitute both of them because they got really tired doing the hard job of going up and down.

“The match changed after the substitution but as I said they were tired so we tried to keep attacking from the left side with Bikash Jairu. We put Amarjit on the right to try to control the ball. Even after the substitution when we did not have complete control of the match, we had more ball possession and we had more chances. (There was) The double chance with Sergio and Amarjit but the goalkeeper made a great save.”

The former Rayo Vallecano manager nitpicked the positives from the season. “After the injuries to Piti and other important players, we had to put young players on the pitch like Narender, Jitendra, Amarjit and Mandi and they have had a lot of minutes of play. This is something which is important for the future of the club. They are the future of the team. Probably in another situation they would have so much time to play. So the positive part of all these injuries was that we gave important minutes to the young players. Next year they will be more prepared to be part of the squad.”

The veteran Spanish coach then spoke about how he approached Mumbai’s Subhasish Bose after the match and reminded him that he had not apologised or enquired about Piti’s condition till date.

Piti, one of the most trusted lieutenants of Iriondo this season, broke his leg on December 19 when Mumbai had travelled to Jamshedpur. In that match, the Spanish midfielder had a clash with Bose and was ruled out of the season.

“Maybe you have noticed that I spoke to Subhasish Bose after the match and I congratulated him for the win but also I told him that something that is very common in Spain that when you break a colleague’s (Piti) leg you ask him how he is feeling after the match. It is a gentleman’s game and injuries can happen, it is a part of the game but he should have apologised or asked how is he feeling. Because if he forgets that and we allow this, then the sport will end in a bad way.”