Owen Coyle: The win will keep the focus and confidence high

Chennaiyin FC beat southern rivals Kerala Blasters FC 3-1 in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai on Friday. Chennai have seemingly found their goal scoring boots after scoring eight in their last four matches, with Andre Schembri, Lallianzuala Chhangte and Nerijus Valskis all getting their names on the scoresheet on the night.

Speaking at the post-match press conference, head coach Owen Coyle discussed his first win at the helm of Chennaiyin, “Everything that we worked on the training ground came to fruition against Kerala Blasters. We looked for a great performance and the three points and we got both. The frustrating part is that we had to win the game three times with some bizarre things that happened on the pitch. That being said, my players were very disciplined. Its four points from two games. It keeps the focus and confidence high.”

“We are giving ourselves a fighting chance for reaching the playoffs. We were almost written off. Chennaiyin is a wonderful club. The fans are wonderful. The club has shown before that once we reach the playoffs, marvellous things can happen. The Indian players are very good and as a foreign coach, I want to help improve him," he further added.

The Englishman heaped praises on ‘Hero of the Match’ Lallianzuala Chhangte, who scored his first goal for Chennaiyin as well as assisted Valskis. “I have to say that Chhangte deserves most of the credit for tonight’s win. He has worked really hard. The toughest thing to do while attacking is to get between the lines and Chhangte does that with ease. When he runs, I told him to slow himself down and cut the ball back, have some composure, and today he was outstanding. If he keeps improving, we can be a better team. He works so hard for his team. All he needs is encouragement,” he shared.

The head coach was also appreciative of the team’s defensive resilience which they portrayed while guarding the lead, “I think, if I am being honest, the team tends to get protective of the lead. We did defend well and managed the game. We are an exciting team while counter-attacking. We have to get fitter and stronger in the second half of the tournament because there are some really good teams on top of us. My players have done everything I asked of them with vigour. My team looks exciting. We want to be positive. We will always work to win matches.”

Read the Match Report here.

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