We are focussed on reaching the playoffs: Chennaiyin FC's Thomas Brdaric

Chennaiyin FC head coach Thomas Brdaric wants to inflict a defeat on their opponents on Saturday but said that he won't underestimate Jamshedpur FC as Chennaiyin FC travel to the JRD Tata Sports Complex in Jamshedpur for the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 fixture.

Both teams are coming after rough patches in the league. While Chennaiyin FC have lost and drawn in the last two games, Jamshedpur FC are winless in the last nine games including their loss against Chennaiyin FC in the reverse fixture. However, Brdaric felt that past results don't matter on Saturday when these two sides meet in Jamshedpur.

"There is enough incentive to come here and play against the reigning champions. We are honest with ourselves and with the situation, we don't underestimate any team. So we analysed many games of Jamshedpur FC and we have played against them already and we know what we will face on Saturday here and it doesn't matter how the results were before," Brdaric said in the pre-match press conference.

Two-time champions, Chennaiyin FC missed the playoffs in the last two seasons and this season, they are in the seventh position in the table with 14 points. The Marina Machans are building a new squad as is evident in their result as they are yet to get two consecutive wins. The head coach talked about the rebuilding phase of the team and what their target is in the season.

"It's good to know that we are competitive and most importantly we have a good atmosphere in the team and then you can survive all battles, to understand how to deal with the results. We do our best to improve all the time. If you see our matches, they were very close, especially the last match against Mumbai City FC. We are here to inflict a defeat on the opponents, this is our aim all the time and going into the playoffs is our big target. We don't lose focus on that," he added.

Chennaiyin FC roped in many exciting talents this season in the likes of Vincy Barretto, Jiteshwor Singh and Sajal Bag. Barretto started the last two games for the Bradric side and scored one goal. The head coach praised these youngsters for the efforts they are putting in and asked for more patience to succeed in future.

"Young (Indian) players are very humble, very talented and has big potential. Vincy Barretto is a big talent in our team and I appreciate his  development, he is a young guy, he's not the youngest, he has some experience but to develop those kinds of players makes me really happy because I see how much they invest to become a professional and we are here to show that way," he added.

"Vincy Barretto showed in the last matches that he deserves to be here and to be started in a starting 11 and this is a good feeling to give a player a chance and take something special out of him," he commented.

Chennaiyin FC is yet to field an unchanged playing eleven in the two consecutive matches, mainly because of the injury concerns. The last match, Samik Mitra got the first appearance in this season in the last match against Mumbai City FC but their top scorer Abdenasser El Khayati missed that match. Brdaric gave the injury update ahead of the match and cleared the club position in the ongoing January transfer window.

"Debjit (Majumder) is not in the squad due to groin pain. Abdenasser (El khayati) is in some developmental treatments, but he needs time and he can't bounce back very fast and that's a pity from that side. I wish him a really fast recovery so that he bounces back much faster," he added.

"Behind the scenes. We are working all the time to present the new player, it needs a little bit of time. We can get professional footballers from agents but they must be suitable to (our plan). We need time to develop a player and implement the playing style in them. Very often in the transfer period, players don't have experience in the last half year, so they lack endurance and the playing minutes so you don't get the fast benefits except when we have special movements from team to team, but that is something I don't see till now. I am happy with my squad," he concluded.

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