Gombau: Hope Chennaiyin's woes against Spanish head coaches continue

Odisha FC will be looking to keep their three-match unbeaten streak in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 going when they face Chennaiyin FC at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai on Thursday. The away fixture, however, represents a tough challenge for Josep Gombau’s men, considering Chennaiyin will be in high spirits after finally ending their goal scoring drought and registering their first victory of the campaign in their last outing against Hyderabad FC.

Odisha head coach Josep Gombau, at the pre-match press conference, analysed his team’s performance so far this season and opined, “I think we have been playing really well, even in the two games we didn’t get the results in the beginning. We lost but dominated the ball and created a lot of chances. The last three games, we have one win and two draws. We have our own original way of playing, which is always difficult.”

“As the head coach I keep my eyes on my team. We have a lot of young players. We are the youngest side in Hero ISL and play with 4-5 Under-23 players in every match. They are improving and I am satisfied,” he added.

Speaking about the impending match, the Spaniard stated, “We have a very interesting game on our hands against a very good side. I like Chennaiyin. They did well in the last game to get the result against Hyderabad. Thursday’s game will also be very important for them, like every game in Hero ISL is. I hope with the work we have been doing, we can get the result.”

One interesting aspect about Chennaiyin this term has been that all their three defeats have come against teams helmed by Spanish head coaches. Asked if he was aware of the fact, Gombau quipped, “I don’t have this data but hope I will be the fourth Spanish coach this season to win against them.”

Odisha have failed to register a single goal in their last two outings. Asked if it was an area of concern for him, Gombau noted, “I think the most important thing is to create chances because unless you create chances, you can’t score. We work on our crossing and finishing in every training session. We have played five matches and scored six goals, which isn’t a bad number. Last two games, we couldn’t find the net but hopefully we can find a goal early against Chennaiyin.”

Accompanying the gaffer at the briefing was Bikramjit Singh, who played for Chennaiyin in Hero ISL 2017-18 and won the title with them. “I am glad to be back here as I have good memories here. We always try our best on the field and will do the same on Thursday,” the midfielder said about facing his former team.

Read the Match Preview here.

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