FC Goa head coach, Carlos Pena was delighted with his team’s brilliant performance against Odisha FC as the Gaurs scored three past the Juggernauts at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, in Margao in Matchweek 10 of Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 season on Saturday.

A spirited second-half performance saw the Gaurs saw the hosts score three goals as Brison Fernandes, Noah Sadaoui and Alvaro Vazquez were on the scoresheet. With this result, Pena’s men move to the fifth spot in the points table. Pena applauded the team’s mentality with regards to how they suffered in tough situations, but overcame them in the second half and brought the three points home.

Pena also about young players in the team learning from their mistakes besises emphasising on the importance of a victory after two tough defeats.

Here are the excerpts from Pena’s press conference:

What are your thoughts on the win?

We are very happy with the victory we got tonight. The players have been impressive in this game because the results show that the players were really feeling some pressure in the legs. We were facing a really good team that came here in a good mood and they showed that in the first half. We knew that we were going to have chances, we had several of those in the second half and the substitutes helped us out. So yes, I'm very happy for the win because these past two weeks haven’t been easy for us.

The entire game changed in the second half, what was the team talk in the dressing room?

We talked about the different situations we could leave in this game. Sometimes we were not comfortable with the ball and tried to defend in our own half. This is what we talked about before the game and it happened in the match. At halftime, I told the players that it's 0-0, to keep on doing the same things and the chances will come and it happened. The players showed that they have the capacity to suffer when things are not going their way. In the second half, we were amazing. We had to fight in the first half but the victory came with three points of great volume.

What are your thoughts about the next match?

We need to balance, today's match is a big victory. Two weeks to learn from the mistakes that happened in the past. We have to respect NorthEast United FC and we want to get three points to get close to the top of the points table. 

How happy are you for Alvaro Vazquez?

I'm very happy for Alvaro. I know it's hard for a number nine to not score goals. I told him that I don't mind if he doesn't score goals because his commitment and work have always been good. Number nine needs balls to score goals and today not only me but the fans as well must be very happy for him.

Your words on Brison's (Fernandes) goal and performance in the match. How big of an impact did the goal make?

I told my assistant coach that we haven't given him many chances after scoring against Jamshedpur FC because of the circumstances. Sometimes you need to have that feeling that you give him a chance. Brison kept on working and kept on doing good in training sessions and we knew the opponents would be tired. Brison showed a lot of energy and I'm very happy for him.

How important was it for your team to keep the score at 0-0 leading up to half-time?

It was very important because the players understood what we had to do. We didn't have the fluency in the first half to keep the ball. It's normal in football, we finished the game with Aibanbha Dohling, Anwar Ali, Dheeraj Moirangthem, and Makan Chothe, players who are very young and it's normal with young players. When you come from two losses, it's normal that you have doubts in your mind, and you are afraid to do things that you normally do. I told the players before the game that I had complete trust in them, they showed character and I'm very happy.

One goal and one assist for Noah Sadaoui, You've played him in different positions in attack. How satisfied are you with his performances?

I'm very happy with him. Noah showed that he was hungry when he didn't play the last game or three weeks ago in November but he didn't stop working, he tried to take advantage of the minutes we gave him, maybe more minutes but I'm here to make decisions and he didn't give up because of that he got the chance again to be in the starting eleven, he helped the team not only in attack but in defence as well. I'm very happy that he helped the team get the three points.