Rafael Bastos: The defeat against Goa made us stronger

Mumbai City FC will look to reclaim the top spot in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) table with a win over FC Goa at the Mumbai Football Arena on Friday. The Islanders have been top form of late and are in the midst of a nine-match unbeaten run. However, Mumbai's last defeat came against the Gaurs back in October, when their opponents drubbed them 5-0 in Goa.

Ahead of the match, indiansuperleague.com caught up with Mumbai's Modou Sougou and Rafael Bastos for an exclusive chat. Here are the excerpts.

Modou Sougou

After the victory against Bengaluru FC, does the team have the confidence to make it to the top four?

Yes, of course. After the victory against Bengaluru FC, the team is very confident to stay in the top four. Because five matches are remaining and if we get great results in the next matches, we have a good chance to stay in the top four and psychologically, the team is more confident after the last win.

Do you think you can finish the season with the Golden Boot?

I don't care about the personal stats. For me, the most important thing is what we can achieve together. Because imagine if I win the Golden Boot and the team wins nothing. For me, that is the most important thing is the team to win something together. We need to go step by step. First is to stay on top and to qualify for the semi-finals. After that, we will see.

Rafael Bastos

Do you think Mumbai have what it takes to qualify for the playoffs?

The most important thing for us is that we don't have only one top player. We are good collectively and we are like family. We win together and we lose together and that is why we are strong. If you see in the past nine games, we didn't lose and we had a good spirit and with that, we can achieve something.

How is the team approaching the match after the 5-0 loss to Goa earlier in the season?

The 5-0 defeat in Goa was very heavy but after that match, the team learnt something because this defeat made us stronger. Because everytime you lose 5-0 it complicates things psychologically but you have to think and go forward. That is what we did and this made us stronger. Now, this game we will play at home in front of our fans and this will help us to be stronger. We need the fans to help us and push us.

Read the match preview here.

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