East Bengal's unbeaten run came to an end after eight matches as they went down 0-1 against Mumbai City in an Indian Super League (ISL) clash on Friday.
The Red and Golds dominated proceedings for the entirety of the second half but failed to find the back of the net. East Bengal Robbie Fowler was happy with the dominant show of his side hailed the attitude of his players.
"This was a performance we can rightly proud of even though we didn't win the game. But we showed everyone how much progress we have made. We looked better as a team, individuals looked fitter and stronger. It is a shame that it took us 45 minutes to get going because we probably gave Mumbai the hardest 45 minutes this year and full credits to the lads. Probably the scoreline didn't do us justice but its a defeat nonetheless," said Fowler.
The Liverpool legend suggested that the target was to get three points from the tie but the way things turned out eventually they would have even settled for a draw.
"Like every game, we got to win. We got the attitude. If we play well and be confident then we can give anyone a game. We showed that tonight. We would have been more than happy to settle for a point, chasing the game really late but we always go out with the attitude to try and win it."
East Bengal were a completely different side in the second half and were the better of the two teams. Coach Fowler revealed what he told his team at half time that changed the approach of the Red and Golds.
"The chat was was to be a bit better and be on the front foot more. When they got the confidence they started playing better in their positions. We made a few tweaks and a change in formation. Our players have shown that they can compete with the good sides.
"Mumbai are a good side with an excellent manager and excellent players. There's a lot for us to work on and we will pick ourselves up. We have real ambition and aspiration to be among the top four."
The British manager suggested that it was frustrating in the end for him not to get a win despite dominating the league leaders and he hoped that they start winning soon.
"It is massively frustrating because we have shown we can compete against the big teams. Every game we want to get the right results. But we will pick ourselves up. This was the first defeat in eight games. It is massively important that we start winning soon. We have got the players to get results so hopefully, the outcome will be good," said Fowler.
The Kolkata club are currently languishing at the bottom half of the league table but their coach is no mood to throw in the towel as he felt there is still a chance of East Bengal making it to the play-offs.
"It gets harder with every passing week and game. It becomes more difficult. But it's important we play the game and try and get the right results. We have seen how tight it is from the midtable to the top. Few good wins can put you right back in the mix. It's not over for us yet, we have a challenge and we are up for it."