Schattorie: We missed some key elements in this match

Kerala Blasters FC's winless run in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 extended to six matches after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Mumbai City FC at the Mumbai Football Arena on Thursday. Messi Bouli gave the visitors the lead in the second half but Amine Chermiti leveled things up for the Islanders.

Speaking at the post-match press conference, Kerala head coach Eelco Schattorie praised his team’s performance and said, “The tactics that I expected from my players worked fantastically, but in the end, we missed elements in the game, especially while going forward. Some missing elements made it difficult to win but the strategy that we put on the table worked.”

“Overall, we were the better team. Mumbai were dangerous only a few times on the counter. All the continuous changes make it very difficult but I am still proud of my team. We dominated the first-half and Jeakson (Singh) had a great game. I think overall, with this young side, a point is good enough. Our club is in transition, and I am proud of my players,” the Dutch coach expanded. 

Schattorie, over the course of the season, has been missing several key players due to injuries and on the night, the Dutchman had to do without Bartholomew Ogbeche, who had to be left out of the squad. “We miss someone in the midfield who can take the game to the opponents. There was no depth. I don’t blame my players at all. I am happy with a point, especially (being) without my captain Bartholomew Ogbeche and the other players,” he remarked, addressing his depleted squad.

“In the end, you need a player like (Paulo) Machado, someone who can distribute the ball. Cido (Sergio Cidoncha) is more of a winger or plays behind the striker. He can drop back but I am missing that kind of a player. Sometimes it is very difficult. You start losing balls. We are trying to keep our defence organized. Honestly, we played with three foreigners, and three to four players who are 20 years old or lesser. Considering this, I think we played quite well. We missed a few elements. If we played them with our strongest XI, I’m sure we could have gotten a better result,” he added.

Read the Match Report here.

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