I think it was one of the best game we have played: Bengaluru FC’s Marco Pezzaiuoli

Bengaluru FC coach Marco Pezzaiuoli believes Sunil Chhetri’s penalty miss was the deciding moment of the match as his side lost 3-1 to Mumbai City FC in their fourth match of Hero Indian Super League 2021-22 at Athletic Stadium, Bambolim on Saturday.

Bengaluru FC has won only one win in four matches. And with one draw and two losses they sit at seventh position in the league table.

After conceding a goal inside the first ten minutes, BFC responded well and got one back through Cleiton Silva. Close to the halftime they got a golden chance to take the lead courtesy of a foul inside the box on Edmund Lalrindika by Mandar Rao Desai. Chhetri stepped up to take the penalty but the keeper, Mohammad Nawaz, dived the right way to deny him.

Mumbai City FC came out strong in the second half and took the lead through a headed goal by Mourtada Fall. In the 85th minute Ygor Catatau slotted the ball at the back of the net to seal the victory for his team.

In the backdrop of Bengaluru FC’s 3-1 defeat to Mumbai City FC, BFC coach Pezzaiuoli spoke to the media during the official post-match press conference.

Here are the excerpts from the press conference.

Will it be fair to say MCFC dominated the game?

No, I don’t think Mumbai City FC dominated the game. I think in the first half we were clearly the better team. They were only shooting long balls. We did good counter pressing. I think in the end they had good ball possession after 2-1. But not before that.

 

We saw your team start with a high tempo and you chose to play Ibara with Silva. Was it a strategy to pounce on Mumbai City FC?

Of course! That’s also our style. Prince has a lot of speed. I think he brought a lot of energy in the first thirty minutes of the game. It’s not easy to lose a player like him in half an hour. But Edmund did well. He won the penalty as well.

 

If Chhetri had converted the penalty, do you think the story of the match would have been different?

I think so. We were the better team in the first half. Cleiton hit the post in the opening minutes. We pressed very high and we came behind the ball very fast. I think it was one of the best games we have played. We made silly mistakes. I think we have enough experience to defend better in set-pieces. There are things we can do better but the team played a good game.

 

Sunil Chhetri has been underperforming, what do you think is going wrong?

I think he was pushing hard. He tried to get a lot of energy in the game. Sometimes you have bad luck. I think the penalty miss was the crucial moment of the game. And Sunil knows, it was an important situation for the team.

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