News Live Scores
Indian Super League

ISL 2019-20: John Gregory - We should have been 3-0 up after 20 minutes

1:24 AM SGT 28/10/19
John Gregory Chennaiyin Pune City
The Chennaiyin FC coach was happy with the clean sheet but maintained that they could have scored three goals in the first half ...

Chennaiyin FC held Mumbai City FC for a 0-0 draw at home to win their first point of the season. Although head coach John Gregory was happy with the clean sheet, he was disappointed to not go up by three goals after dominating in the opening minutes of the first half.

“After about 20 minutes in the first half, where we dominated, we faded away. I was frustrated that we did not score 3 goals at least. They couldn’t get the ball off us in the first 20 minutes. We are very frustrated we were not ahead comfortably. We stopped doing the good things we had done well after that.

“We were giving away possession too easily. My midfielders were not in the game at that particular time. We got to half-time and Mumbai does this to a lot of teams. They sit back, sit back and then steal a goal on a counter-attack. They did it to us last year,” he said.

The Englishman lauded his team for a good performance but believed that they could have done better if not for the lack of match fitness.

He said, “In the second half, I thought it was a matter of time before we scored. Amrinder (Singh) made a good save. (Nerijus) Valskis had a good chance. I certainly feel very proud of the way we did our job.

“We lacked a bit of match fitness. Masih (Saighani) and Rafael (Crivellaro) joined us very late and they were not up to the speed we wanted them to be. I was very happy with the performance.

Dhanpal has been out for 12 months and I think the fitness was beginning to show on him but he battled it out.”

The Chennaiyin manager also spoke about how his top players faded out of the game and explained that top teams must not face such issues.

“The footballers have to be in the game. (Anirudh) Thapa, Rafael, Dragos (Firtulescu), (Lallianzuala) Chhangte are all good technical footballers and they have to be in the game. It was as if all four of them suddenly were not in the game.

“You look at all the good teams, people like (Edu) Bedia and (Ahmed) Johouh are always in the games. We need to have that in our team.

"From a defensive point of view, we messed up a couple of times. But in the second half, Edwin (Vanspaul) improved. We kept a clean sheet which is always impressive. A coach always likes a clean-sheet. We can build on tonight’s performance I think.

“Rafael didn’t start last week. Thapa did not start. We had a different formation in Goa. We changed it tonight and I thought it was very good. You always look for the best XIs. I bring on Valskis for (Andre) Schembri tonight and he got a good couple of chances. Versatility is a nice thing to have,” he concluded.