Sergio Lobera: Conceding the first goal changed the match

FC Goa were subjected to a 2-0 defeat by ATK FC in Match 62 of Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Saturday. After a goalless first half, Pritam Kotal gave the hosts the lead early in the second half before Jayesh Rane grabbed the second two minutes from regulation time.

Speaking at the post-match press conference, Goa head coach Sergio Lobera shared his thoughts on the loss and said, “I think after the set piece which led to the first goal by ATK, we had a lot of chances to score. At that moment we took some risks. When you attack against a very good counter-attacking team, it’s possible to concede and we did. I think we had more chances but against big teams, it’s difficult to win the match.”

Adding to this, he said, “For me, us conceding the first goal changed the match. We played very well in the first half. It was an equal match between equal teams.”

Goa’s key playmaker Brandon Fernandes was suspended for the game. Asked whether his absence was a big hindrance, the Spaniard said, “The problem was not only the absence of Brandon. I had four players who can play in that position – Jackichand (Singh), (Seiminlen) Doungel, Brandon and Liston (Colaco).  The club decided to sell Liston four days before the match, so I had to think of something because it is not easy to replace wingers, especially when you have only two available. I think today most of the opportunities were through the wings. Maybe the loss is because I missed these players.”

The 43-year-old also admitted his team needs to improve defensively, particularly from set piece situations. “It’s very important to improve the defensive aspects, especially from set pieces. But the second goal was possible because we had to take a risk with three defenders to try to score one goal to draw the match. As a coach, I had to take the risk.”

Read the Match Report here.

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