Steve Coppell desperate for Jamshedpur to score goals

Jamshedpur FC host Mumbai City FC in Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2017-18 at the JRD Tata Sports Complex in Jamshedpur on Friday. The league debutants have the best defensive record in the league, having only conceded twice in their seven encounters so far. However, they have not exactly been prolific in scoring and come off the back of a 1 – 0 setback against Chennaiyin FC, a game in which they conceded and missed a penalty.

Speaking to the media during the pre-match press conference was the host’s head coach Steve Coppell, and he started off by assessing his team’s performance so far. “I’m desperate for the team to score goals,” he said. “That hasn’t happened so far even with the penalty but I’m confident that we will score goals and the sooner the better. It’s a big priority for us. You have to appreciate that defensively, which is an important part of the game, we are quite strong. We have to find the balance to be more potent going forward without losing the balance defensively.”

The Englishman was also critical about the pitch conditions, admitting that it affected his team’s game. “I think it (the pitch) contributes to the lack of goals in all the games we’ve played here so far,” he opined. “It’s very difficult to run with the ball, to dribble. You know in order to score goals you have to be able to run with the ball and shoot and the pitch has been difficult so far. I don’t want to make such a big thing about the pitch. I believe it will get better. But it’s also a factor in fitness calculations.”

He was also clear about what the team’s objective was regarding the league. “Everyone that we play is a good team. Pune, Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, Goa; they are the five best teams in the league,” the 62-year-old said. “We’ve got the five best teams in a row. We have to contribute, commit, try to attack as much as possible and be solid defensively. We aspire to be amongst the best teams in the league. We want to be in the playoffs. For a new team to be in the playoffs will be a great achievement and that will be something to be proud of.”

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