Jesus Tato: Have mixed feelings but we showed good character

Current league-leaders FC Goa suffered just their second defeat in Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 as they lost out 2-1 to Bengaluru FC at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium on Friday. In a tale of two halves, the Gaurs were the much superior one in the first 45, dominating possession and creating good chances. However, the ruthless edge was lacking from their game and eventually came back to hurt them in the second half as the defending champions grabbed all three points.

At the post-match press conference, FC Goa’s assistant coach, Jesus Tato reiterated that fact and said, “The first half was very good for us. We played amazing football. But finally, football is about not only playing well but scoring goals. In the second half, Bengaluru pushed from the first minute. We knew that they were going to do so because they had to reduce the gap to us. But I think we suffered well.”

“We tried to keep the ball with us and conceded again from a set-piece. The players bounced back well. They didn’t go down and didn’t give up. When we got the first goal, I thought we could have got the three points. But from one mistake, we conceded a chance to one of the best players (Sunil Chhetri) and they scored. But we have a mix of feelings. The way we played was our style and we are happy with that,” he added.

Tato also felt that while the defeat was a hard pill to swallow, his players showed good character and should build on that in the coming fixtures. “Everybody knows that Bengaluru is a strong team at set-pieces. Unfortunately, we suffered a lot in this aspect last season. We worked a lot on this. We know that they are very strong (in such situations). But football is like this.”

“We worked a lot, but we lost concentration and they scored. We have to keep going our way and improve. We are in a good position on the table. It’s true that we are very disappointed because of the result and the way we conceded the goals. But the players showed a lot of character and we also want to focus on this,” he said.

Lastly, the Gaurs assistant coach rebuffed claims that his team suffer from a mental block when they go up against Bengaluru. “No, I don’t think (that we suffer mentally). Because if it is a mental situation, we could not have played like we did today. If the players are afraid of the other team, the players cannot display this type of football. I think the supporters in the stadium enjoyed it a lot. I enjoyed it a lot and it is good for the league also. Today two very strong teams played. Both of them could have won. Unfortunately for us, Bengaluru won the match,” Tato stated.

Read the Match Report here.

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