Gombau confident of a good showing against Mumbai

Odisha FC take on Mumbai City FC in a tough away fixture in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 at the Mumbai Football Arena on Thursday. Odisha will be looking for their first win of the season, after having been narrowly edged out in their opening two fixtures by a 2-1 scoreline.

Speaking at the pre-match press conference, Odisha head coach Josep Gombau reaffirmed his belief on the squad despite the back-to-back losses. “I think we have had two good games, especially the second one. I think against NorthEast, we completely dominated the game, but we suffered a loss after two small mistakes. I am confident that the team will do well against Mumbai.”

Odisha will be playing their third successive away match on Thursday. Asked if the schedule had been disadvantageous to the team, Gombau opined, "The fact that we are playing many games away in a row is something that is difficult. But I don’t want to use it as an excuse. I think that every game is different, and we have a good squad this season. I think we can get results anywhere. I know it will be hard but if we get some wins, we have seven-eight games at home which will be good for us."

Speaking about the opponents, the Spaniard said, “I think it can be a very good game. Mumbai have a very good squad and an excellent coach (Jorge Costa). He has a lot of experience in Europe. He has won the UEFA Champions League as a player. I think that you can see, the whole team is very balanced.”

Gombau then went on to praise midfielder Xisco Hernandez and young winger Jerry Mawihmingthanga. “Xisco is a very good addition for us this season. He is a player who already has experience in the Hero ISL. He knows his position very well and is a Hero ISL winner. He scored last week, and I hope he keeps scoring. Against Mumbai, he will be on the field and I hope he can help us win the game.”

"I think when we signed Jerry, we knew that he has potential. He is a player that I like. He has been playing well and I am satisfied with him. Among all the young players, Jerry, especially, has a very good future. He is very quick. He needs to build his confidence and believe in himself and he will be a very good player in India in the next two-three years," he added.

The gaffer was joined by defender Rana Gharami at the presser. Commenting on how the atmosphere in the dressing room has been, he said, “Everything in the dressing room is very good because the foreign players, as well as the Indian players, are very good. We did not get the point in the last match because of bad luck. The next match, we will try to win.”

Read the Match Preview here.

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