Gombau still hopeful of making it to the top four

Delhi Dynamos FC return to the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi this Sunday when they host Jamshedpur FC in Match 28 of the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2018-19. After failing to register a single victory in their opening six matches, the Lions will be hoping for a change in fortunes against Cesar Ferrando’s side.

Ahead of the fixture, Delhi head coach Josep Gombau took time to interact with the media during the pre-match press conference. The Spaniard was asked if he was concerned with the mistakes cropping up in his defence, particularly after captain Pritam Kotal's mistake led to NorthEast United FC's second goal in their last match. Gombau reiterated his trust in Pritam and the other members of his backline and said, “Look, this is football. In football, you need to be ready to accept these and be ready to work to make sure that tomorrow this doesn’t happen. Boys are working well, boys are working hard. It’s true that Pritam is playing a lot of games in a short time. In the last month, he played seven games -which is a lot for a professional player. Sometimes when you tired, this type of mistakes can come. I am happy with him. Mistakes happen in football and we just need to adjust and don’t make anymore.”

Responding to whether he will be making any changes for the match, the veteran coach said, “Look, if I make changes, it’s not for the results. It’s more because we’re playing a lot of games. We have one game on Thursday again in Goa. Yeah, probably we will bring some new additions to the team. I am satisfied with the players. I think everybody is giving 100%.”

Delhi’s opponents on Sunday will be brimming with confidence after their comprehensive 4-1 win over FC Goa. Gombau admitted that beating Jamshedpur will be a tough task and lauded them for their performance in their last game. “I saw their game and they played fantastic. They played very well. And they played against a very good side which is Goa. They play good football, scored four goals. From the very beginning, they showed they want to win the game. Every game is different. I hope tomorrow we can play well, and we can beat them,” he said.

Asked whether he still had hopes for the top four, Gombau argued that they are in with a chance until the numbers said otherwise. “Look, if the numbers are there, we need to fight, and we need to try to be in the top four. We have to have this conviction. If you see, it’s not that far away. Six points gap which is two games. So, why not? We’re going to try our best and work hard,” he stated.

Gombau also addressed the issue of his side conceding late goals and said, “We need to stop giving away these easy balls. Last game, two goals came because of our mistakes, not from chances that they created. We conceded goals on 82 and 90 minutes. The first goal came after we try to just clear and created space for them near our goal, which was a big mistake. And after that, the second goal is another mistake that we make. We ruined the game in terms of these mistakes. NorthEast played well and they have these chances to score and also we have few chances to score. But in the end, this game was decided by our mistakes.”

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