Kerala Blasters FC’s assistant coach Frank Dauwen expects a tough match against last season’s League Shield Winners Mumbai City FC but feels the team is confident of taking on the challenge thanks to their positive start to the season. 

Kerala Blasters FC have won both their opening encounters in the Indian Super League (ISL) without conceding a goal and will look to maintain their start when they make the trip to the Mumbai Football Arena on Sunday. 

“When you play against a champion from last year, it's always difficult because Mumbai City FC are a very good team,” Dauwen said during the pre-match press conference. 

“But we have started the season well with six points out of six and that gives us confidence. I look forward to playing a good game,” he added. 

The Yellow Army have a terrible record in Mumbai, winning on just one of their seven visits to the city. Their last trip to face the Islanders ended in a 4-0 defeat. But Dauwen feels, his side is in good shape to tackle the challenge. 

“We haven't conceded a lot of chances. The balance in our team is fine. We have players upfront like Luna and Diamantakos who can make the difference,” he said. 

Luna and Diamantakos have a strong understanding between them and have already displayed it during the few minutes the duo has been together on the pitch. With Diamantakos now fully fit, the Blasters can hope to unleash their best attacking players on Des Buckingham’s side. 

“Luna is always our captain and very important for our team. In the beginning, Diamantakos had problems with injury. But now he is back and he started on the bench in the last game. But they have a good connection on the field and we are very happy that he is back fit and hopefully, we can do good things on Sunday,” he said. 

Kerala Blasters FC midfielder Jeakson Singh accompanied Dauven to the press conference and spoke about improving their record in Mumbai. 

“We had a really bad game last year in Mumbai. We have started well this year. They have good players and a strong team but we are here to compete and get a positive result,” Jeakson said. 

Head coach Ivan Vukomanovic is suspended for the game but the midfielder believes it’s down to the players to execute his gameplan when they take to the field. 

“The coach is always giving us instructions and he is always supporting us. Hopefully, we can perform as he wants and get the result,” he concluded.