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Football ISL: Mohun Bagan to take on gritty Chennaiyin
Fatorda, January 20, 2021
Mohun Bagan have dropped five points in their last two games but coach Antonio Habas insists that his team was under "no added pressure" as they take on Chennaiyin in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) at the Fatorda Stadium on Thursday, .
The Kolkata team lost against Mumbai City and drew with Goa which nearly cost them the second spot.
"There is no added pressure. In championships, you have good moments and sometimes bad. We have played the last two games against the top two teams – Goa and Mumbai City who are capable of winning the league. We are in the top half of the table. Maybe we need to improve," said the Bagan coach.
Habas’ side has created the least number of chances (81) this season and has attempted just 35 shots on target. They have also scored just 11 — the joint-second-lowest in the league
The Spaniard was quick to defend the team’s attackers and said: "We need to find the right balance between attack and defence. I wouldn’t prefer scoring and conceding 25 goals. That’s not good for me."
Roy Krishna, their main attacking outlet, scored 5 goals in his first 6 matches but since then, he has scored just one in the last five. When questioned about the Fijian's form, Habas quipped: "Don’t worry, this situation will happen. I don’t have any problem. This is football."
“We have to continue our work. Our idea is to get three points in every match. After that we can think about the playoffs,” Habas added.
The last time the two teams met, they split points after a goalless draw.
Meanwhile, good defensive performances have kept Csaba Laszlo's team in contention for a playoffs berth. Chennaiyin have already kept more clean sheets than they did in the entire last season. However, their progress has been marred by injuries during the campaign, with Rafael Crivellaro being the latest casualty.
"I know my team and I know the actual situation in the team. We lost our captain Rafael Crivellaro. Rafa was an important piece of the puzzle in the system and he was voted one of the best players last season,” said Laszlo.
“We are fighting with injuries. We are fighting with some kind of (bad) luck. But we are not complaining. I can take everything positively. You have to take the best out of the team,” he added.