Mohun Bagan Super Giant head coach Juan Ferrando lauded forward Dimitri Petratos for his hard work as the Australian forward inspired the Mariners to a 3-1 win against Punjab FC in their Indian Super League 2023-24 opener at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Saturday. 

Jason Cummings, Petratos and Manvir were on the scoresheet for Mohun Bagan SG while Luka Majcen found the back of the net for the visitors. Australian forward Petratos was heavily involved in the game. He set up Singh for the third goal after opening his account for the season and was awarded the Player of the Match. Ferrando hailed Petratos’ hard work and mentioned that the Australian was a prime example for his teammates.       

“It is the same as last. I'm so happy because Dimitri is an example for the rest of his teammates to work hard. This is good and this is the way. It’s not magic and I don't know if we will win matches in future, but one important thing is that the team works (together) and trusts in one plan. In the case of Dimitri, he is a good example for the rest of his teammates. It's necessary that they follow him in this way and I hope we will get more closer to good results,” Ferrando stated in the post-match press conference. 

Mohun Bagan SG had a comfortable two-goal cushion going into the break, but a goal from Majcen revived Punjab FC’s hope of a comeback. However, the Mariners not only defended cautiously from that point, but also displayed intent to add to their tally. Singh scored two minutes after coming on and the hosts could have had more goals to their name, had they taken their chances.

Ferrando was proud of the way his team reacted despite seeing their clean sheet for the evening being wiped out.   

“I’m happy because after the goal (for Punjab FC), the reaction of the team was to attack. We scored the third goal with good actions so I’m happy. I think it's necessary to explain to everybody that the job (done) by these players is amazing. In seven days, we have three important matches. The last match was in the AFC Cup, then two matches in the league and then again in the AFC Cup on Monday. It’s a pleasure when the players are working hard and have a good reaction in difficult moments,” Ferrando explained.