Kerala Blasters FC’s assistant coach, Frank Dauwen, expressed his disappointment as his team suffered their first defeat of the Indian Super League (ISL) season against Mumbai City FC at the Mumbai Football Arena on Sunday.

Jorge Pereyra Diaz continued his impressive form, scoring the opening goal for Mumbai City FC in the dying minutes of the first half. The Blasters managed to level the score in the second half with a superb header from Danish Farooq. However, the Islanders quickly regained their lead within 10 minutes, with Lalengmawia Ralte, also known as Apuia, scoring his first goal of the season, which ultimately proved decisive.

Dauwen felt that Diaz’s goal shifted the momentum in favor of Mumbai City FC. He also noted that his team encountered difficulties in creating scoring opportunities and exerting pressure on the home team.

“Yeah, maybe a little bit (the opening goal conceded our momentum). I think so, because we started the game very, very well with good pressure on the ball. But then we conceded one goal, and you see, then the pressure gets lower, and then we have more difficulties to get the ball. Also, in my opinion, when we had the ball, there were no solutions in front of us to make chances. But I think in the second half, we spoke a little bit about this, to keep the pressure back (on the ball). And (after that) it was much better,” Dauwen said in the post-match press conference.

Despite the result, Dauwen believed that his team deserved to earn a point in Mumbai. He expressed frustration over his team's individual errors, which cost them the victory, emphasising the importance of learning from these mistakes and preparing for the next game.

“I think, yes (we deserved a point) because the second half was good for us. But in football, it happens. You can concede a goal with an individual mistake, and today we did it. And then it's difficult to win games when you make mistakes. But it's part of the job, it's part of football. We had two individual mistakes, so we don’t have points,” he stated.

Kerala Blasters FC has now dropped to the fourth position in the points table. The Tuskers will next face NorthEast United FC on their home turf on October 21 after the international break.