Eelco Schattorie: Hope we get confidence from this win
Kerala Blasters FC secured their second win of the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 as they beat Hyderabad FC 5-1 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi on Sunday. It was the away team which scored the first goal, but Kerala came roaring back with five goals of their own to win the tie and lift themselves to the seventh position in the table.
Having broken their nine-match winless run, Kerala head coach Eelco Schattorie was a relieved man and shared his views on the night’s result at the post-match press conference. “Very happy with the three points. The goal we conceded was from a defensive mistake. We knew Hyderabad were going to attack, we had that in mind. We need to get these mistakes out of our system. But we recovered well. I was not happy with the first 20-30 minutes, we lacked depth. It wasn’t perfect, but I am happy with the three points and I hope we get confidence from the win,” he said.
Asked what exactly, according to him, brought about the change in fortune, the Dutchman opined, “We have been unlucky on certain occasions in the past and there was nothing wrong with our mentality. Overall, even in the last game against NorthEast, I was 100% convinced we would win but we had this unfortunate penalty against us. Hopefully, we can play three-four games with the same XI, but it is difficult. It was just a matter of getting everyone fit and creating consistency.”
With current table-toppers ATK FC set to be their next opponents, Schattorie was asked if he thought that the much-needed win came at the right time for his team. The 48-year-old responded, “Every team needs confidence. All the teams who are towards the top are there because they have had consistency with their starting XIs. We haven’t had that. We have a good team, but consistent changes (due to injuries) have made it difficult for us. I am not complaining, but I am working very hard to get this club where it needs to be, and it will take time.”
Gianni Zuiverloon’s return from injury had a visible positive impact on the team on the night. Schattorie, however, revealed that slotting the Dutchman in was a risky call, one which had to be made considering the lack of other options. “Zuiverloon did fantastic today. He also helped a lot playing out from the back. But you need to consider that he has trained only six times since returning from injury and playing 90 minutes in that condition is a big deal. I was in the sideline hoping he doesn’t get injured again. He is a fantastic player, but we need to manage his return carefully. It was too early but we needed to take the risk because we don’t have too many options. I really hope we can keep Zuiverloon fit because it makes a difference,” the coach noted.
Finally, giving his opinion on the performances of Seityasen Singh and Halicharan Narzary, both of whom had a good outings against Hyderabad, Schattorie said, “Seityasen missed the whole of last season. Hopefully he will get into a rhythm slowly as that is important. I am happy that he got a goal today and also executed some good dribbles. Halicharan is the same. He also had a long injury last season. I am happy he did well today.”
Read the Match Report here.