Speaking after the defeat, Minerva Punjab head coach Khogen Singh stated that their opponents looked mentally stronger due to their impressive run of results lately. ‘’The ultimate result was tough. Psychologically Gokulam Kerala were better because they have been winning,’’ he commented.
Further, the gaffer criticised the officiating as he revealed, ‘’The match was stopped very often by the referees because of which the game wasn’t flowing.’’
On the other hand, Gokulam Kerala head coach Bino George was unhappy with the ground conditions at the Tau Devi Lal Stadium. ‘’I am sorry to say that the condition of the ground is very bad. Our style is the possession-based football but we can’t do the same game on such a ground. Despite that, we created several chances and a few hit the crossbar,’’ expressed George.
Assessing the performance, George admitted that he anticipated a defensive display from the hosts. Further, he stated that the Ranjit Bajaj-owned side had a lot at stake while his boys had none.
‘’I knew that Minerva Punjab would play defensive and concentrate on the counter attacks. They play direct football, we knew since our first match with them. Minerva Punjab have pressure as they are fighting for the championship while we had nothing to lose,’’ said George, whose side have now registered three consecutive wins against the top three sides, namely Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and Minerva Punjab, in a span of eight days.
Recalling the victory against Reds and Golds, George joked, ‘’After the East Bengal match, the East Bengal coach (Khalid Jamil) told me that you killed my championship hopes so you go there (Punjab) and kill theirs (Minerva Punjab)!’’
At the end, the Gokulam Kerala gaffer declared his target of participating in the Super Cup, which will see 16 sides compete for the championship. ‘’My aim is to play in the Super Cup. I hear the venue could be Kerala so our (Gokulam Kerala’s) presence is very important,’’ he concluded.