It was a game of two halves: Hyderabad FC head coach Thangboi Singto
Hyderabad FC and Bengaluru FC played out a draw, resulting in Hyderabad FC earning their second point of the season.
Hyderabad FC head coach Thangboi Singto believes his side had the opportunity to secure a win after their 1-1 draw against Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) at the Gachibowli Stadium in Hyderabad on Saturday.
It was a very tough day for both goalkeepers Gurpreet Singh Sandhu and Gurmeet Singh, as both teams created multiple goal-creating chances throughout the whole match. Hyderabad FC's Mohammad Yasir scored the opener from a defense-splitting pass from Oswaldo Alanis, giving no chance to veteran goalkeeper Sandhu. Ryan Williams continued his goal-scoring form and leveled the score in the 58th minute, beating the Hyderabad FC defenders with his brilliant run.
The result sees Hyderabad FC's winless run extend to five games with the team still searching for their first win of the season. Singto believes if his team converted their chances, then the result would have been different for them.
"As I mentioned before, playing against Bengaluru FC is always tough because they have a lot of experience in the ISL. They have some of the best Indian players," he said in the post-match press conference.
"I think it was a game of two halves. For me, the team, the first 20 minutes, I think we are really dominating in terms of creating, in terms of going forward. Then I think BFC came back and they deserved the goal... In the second half, I think Bengaluru FC came back, and they were really strong in the second half. But there were phases in the play when I think we had three probably contributed chances, one from Moya, Hitesh (the flicker) and those (others). If those were taken, I think it would have been a different result."
Mark Zothanpuia was handed his first ISL start of the season. The defender was deployed in the wing-back position and did an excellent job at both ends of the pitch. On his thoughts of using Zothanpuia from his unusual role as a wingback, Singto said, "He (Zothanpuia) definitely brought a different dimension to the game."
"We've known Mark (Zothanpuia) for the last three, four years; I've seen him here. He was more of a midfield creative player. But today, it was three jobs for him. One was to attack at the right time, one was to keep the ball in the midfield, (and the third was to) try to connect with Joao Victor, Sahil Tavora, Jonathan Moya, Felipe (da Silva Amorim). And, when the team needs you, we defend like that. And that's what he did. Credit goes to the boy, and I think credit goes to the senior players around him for motivating the young boy. I think that's important when a young boy plays out of position, and when he does something good, praise (him). When he does something wrong, motivate (him). I think that's key."
After being unable to get a point in their first three matches, Hyderabad FC has now secured points in back-to-back games against tough teams such as Mumbai City FC and Bengaluru FC. Singto switched to a 3-5-2 formation against Bengaluru FC and restricted the Blues to four shots on target despite the multiple chances that they created.
Expressing his thoughts on trying out a different formation, Singto said, "I think in this modern game, they (players) do understand the needs, the requirements when needed to play different positions or a different system or different formations. I think the players understand well."
"And I think the training, the planning, the videos, and the explanations were crystal clear... I think it's all teamwork, and yeah, I've been mentioning that the last week has been one of the better days. We trained well, and I think we exhibited today (how we need to function) as a team, as a whole (unit). Again, I don't want to say that we need to score upfront because we create chances. Our case today may be lesser than BFC, but the goal we created was really, really good."