The break helped us mentally and physically; we are ready to fight: NorthEast United FC’s Khalid Jamil

NorthEast United FC head coach Khalid Jamil wants his players to completely focus on the next game and put their best foot forward, as his side faces Jamshedpur FC in their next hurdle in matchday 51 of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-22 season on Thursday at the Athletic Stadium in Bambolim, Goa.

With their key signing Federico Gallego ruled out for the rest of the season due to a knee injury, Jamil admitted that the club is on the lookout for replacements of Gallego, the announcement of which will be made public soon.

Prior to the game against Jamshedpur FC, head coach Khalid Jamil addressed the media during a pre-match press conference.

Here are the excerpts from Jamil’s press conference:

Jamshedpur FC lost their last game but have scored many goals and are sound defensively. So, how do you plan against such a well-balanced side?

After the game against Mumbai, we had enough time, we had a good recovery. Talking about the game, they are a good team and are in a good place [in the league table], but we have to go for three points and nothing else. Everybody is ready, all the players are there. They are a good team, and we are prepared to not take this match lightly. We have to fight and be positive.

NorthEast United FC got a 9-day break after the last game. How important was this break for the team given the injury concerns in the squad?

Yes, we're ready to play, we used this break for recovery because we played continuous matches and we got this time. It was particularly good for the team, mentally and physically also. So, we are prepared for this match.

Have NorthEast United FC found the replacement for Federico Gallego? When can we expect any announcements from NorthEast United FC for the same?

We’re looking forward to the replacement of Federico Gallego. We’ve already shortlisted some players, and within a few days we’ll announce the replacement.

NorthEast United FC have lost five matches out of nine. Coming into the new year, how do you plan to motivate the players and keep the momentum to finish at a satisfactory level in the league?

We’re already thinking about the next game, and we should not think about the past or the future, we must think about the present: the game we’re playing against Jamshedpur FC. So, it’s best to think about this, and after that, we’ll fight for everything, and it will be fine very soon.

The players are working hard, they know the [current] situation, I don’t have to say anything. There is no complaint about anything, and they know the result is not bothering us, but one thing is that we have to work harder.

How have the Indian players developed under you so far?

All the players are working extremely hard and if anything, they are waiting for their chance, to improve themselves, to get more gametime. You see the Indian players, Gurjinder Kumar, Mirshad Michu, Mashoor Shereef, Imran Khan, Provat Lakra, Pragyan, Shehnaj Singh, Danmawia [Laldanmawia Ralte], Mapuia [Lalkhawpuimawia], Chhara [Rochharzela].

All these players are giving their absolute best and giving them a chance improves their confidence, they can play very well.

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