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I-League 2018-19: East Bengal's Alejandro Menendez under no doubt that Chennai City will drop points

12:32 EAT 24/02/2019
East Bengal
The former Real Madrid youth coach has given his take on the title race...

East Bengal coach Alejandro Menendez is confident that Chennai City FC will drop points in the 2018-19 I-League title race.

The Red and Golds currently have a match in hand as compared to the southern outfit who face Mohun Bagan on Sunday, while the former face Aizawl FC on Monday.

With East Bengal looking to stay within two points from the league leaders, Menendez said, "Chennai can also lose matches and the pressure will be on them (too). We need that they should drop some points which I am sure of, and if we will win all of our points we will get the title."

Given that former World Cupper Johnny Acosta is set to miss out on account of suspension, he responded, "We will put the best replacement for Johnny. The level of the team will not change."

Due to face Real Kashmir away from home in their subsequent fixture despite the concerning conditions in the region, the Spaniard insisted that the focus would remain only on his side's next match.

"At this moment, all the players are focused only on the next match (against Aizawl). In our practice sessions we are only talking about our next opponent," Menendez stated.

Having lost to Aizawl in the reverse fixture and facing a team battling relegation, he added, "It's not better or worse to face a team fighting the relegation battle or to win the championship. They have motivation to avoid relegation but one more time it is going to be a difficult match for us.

"The situation is totally different from the reverse fixture. It's a different moment of the season and both teams need to get points. This is the only similarity that we can find. We have all the tools that we need to win the match and if we play in the way we practice, we know what we will win the match."

Further more, with all the remaining matches after Monday's tie to be played away from home, the East Bengal gaffer is unperturbed. "We always work only to win, whether we play home or away. We are ready to win all the matches that we have to play but now we will only focus on the next match."

On other other hand, Aizawl FC's Standly Rozario is confident of his boys putting up a good show against the Kolkatan giants.

"Tomorrow's (Monday) match is very important for us. It's going to be a tough match because right now East Bengal are playing very well. They are also trying to become the champions," he mentioned.

"So they will come very strong at us. It's going to be a home match for them with the crowd supporting them. It's going to be a challenging match for us but my boys are ready and we are looking forward for tomorrow's match in a positive mindset. I hope we can take some positives from tomorrow's match."