After throwing a 2-0 lead against FC Goa in the opening match, Bengaluru FC coach Carles Cuadrat is keen to make amends when they lock horns with Hyderabad FC in their next encounter in the Indian Super League (ISL). Against the Gaurs, his team chose to attack on the counter but that could well change in the next game as they might look to take the game to Hyderabad.
"Against Hyderabad we have a different match plan. All the players are ready...I mean all the players. The younger payers, the seven foreign players are alll ready. It is just the start and we don't know how it is going to end. We watched their (Hyderabad's) victory against Odisha. We are expecting a tough game," stated the manager on the eve of the match.
Being clinical was a concern for Bengaluru last season and Cuadrat agreed that they could have done better in front of goal against Goa.
"We are training hard. We got six more days to prepare. Some of the players had been training for two weeks and now they have three weeks. We are much fitter (than we were in the last game). We had some chances to make the scoreline bigger. Sunil (Chhetri) missed one chance from a counter-attack. Fran (Gonzalez) could have headed one from a free-kick. Some players were not ready for 90 minutes and we had to make substitutions.
"We have some players who are familiar with the squad. For Kristian (Opseth) and (Deshorn) Brown, they were playing the first game after just 10 days of training. They understand the team. I am sure we can play with three foreigners (strikers) together. No problem with Kristian, Brown and Cleiton (Silva) playing together."
Giving away a two-goal lead wasn't the best of starts for the Bangalore-based club. But the tactician feels that his team responded positively in the last 20 minutes against Goa and the result could have been different if they could have found a good through-ball to their strikers.
"I totally agree with that (on managing the game better). Some players were tired. We wanted to get the three points. We were playing well and so I did not want to change much. Unfortunately, they got two goals in three minutes. On many occasions when a team concedes two quick goals, they go on to ultimately lose the game. You tend to become negative as a team. But that did not happen. We adjusted a little bit. We put better players like Dimas (Delgado) and that helped the team to become more mature. We managed the last 20 minutes in a different way. We also troubled them as we got two corners and created goal-scoring chances. We were close to the last pass success. If we had made that, then the scoreline would have been different," explained Cuadrat.
All the matches in this edition of ISL will be played in empty stadiums due to the Coronavirus pandemic. It means Bengaluru have been missing their fans at the venue. The manager feels although it is not affecting the results right now, it could have an effect in the future.
"Not yet but it might happen in future. We have got more points at home. The fans help us in an incredible way. We have scored many last-minute goals and that is due to the atmosphere in the stadium. It is not going to happen here. But there are no excuses. We have to keep fighting," signed off the coach.