Against Hyderabad FC, we must be focused for the full ninety minutes: Kerala Blasters FC's Ivan Vukomanovic

Kerala Blasters FC head coach Ivan Vukomanovic asserted that his players will continue to stay positive despite conceding a late goal in the last match against ATK Mohun Bagan as they prepare to face a tough Hyderabad FC challenge in match 99 of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-22 season at Athletic Stadium, Bambolim, Goa on Wednesday.

Kerala Blasters FC are placed fourth in the league with 27 points in 16 matches. They are only a couple of points ahead of Mumbai City FC who have played the same number of matches.

KBFC drew 2-2 against ATK Mohun Bagan in their last match. They took the lead twice but the Mariners came back to spoil their party.

Ahead of Kerala Blasters FC’s match against Hyderabad FC, coach Vukomanovic and forward Chencho Gyeltshen addressed the media during the official pre-match press conference.

Here are the excerpts from Vukomanovic’s press conference.

The game against Hyderabad FC is crucial, what are your expectations from the match?

Vukomanovic: Well, it’s another day and another match. It’s a short competition where the games keep coming on. It’s another game on the schedule we have to play and another opponent. They are one of the best teams in the league. They are top of the table for a reason. They work with consistency and a process. They deserve to be on the top of the table. I am hoping we will be concentrated. Because against one of the best teams in the league you have to be concentrated for ninety five minutes. You have to be focused, organised and try to use their weak points. It’s a game with the stake every football player likes to play.

Enes Sipovic came on as substitute and conceded a last minute goal against NorthEast United FC. The same thing happened in the last match against ATKMB. Do you think substituting Bijoy was a wrong decision?

Vukomanovic: Well, we have to react in those moments with the substitution because our young defender Bijoy was suffering from cramps. So, we didn’t want to take risks because we need him till the end of the competition. And maybe towards the end, those circumstances would provoke the worst injury. It happens. Sipovic was in the box and maybe if he didn’t touch the ball, it would have gone centrally to Gill. We are still positive with those things and will continue to be.

Last time when Jorge Diaz was suspended, Luna played as a striker. Will you adopt the same formation?

Vukomanovic: We are looking for a different type (of formation). Tomorrow we will try to explore some other things. And we will see and hope for the best. We have enough players with good quality who can be there on the pitch, so, as a coach it makes me happy.

Here are the excerpts from Gyeltshen’s press conference.

You have played with many Indian clubs so far. How do you explain your time at Kerala Blasters FC?

Gyeltshen: I am playing in India for the fifth year. I am honoured to have signed for Kerala Blasters FC. They have a huge fan base. I am getting a lot of support from the fans. I am very happy to play for the club.

We are waiting for your first KBFC game, do you think it can happen tomorrow?

Gyeltshen: You can expect it anytime, whenever I get on the pitch. Being a striker, my aim is to score goals. You can expect it anytime.

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