We have to stay humble, continue working hard: Kerala Blasters FC head coach Ivan Vukomanovic

Kerala Blasters FC head coach Ivan Vukomanovic wants his side to prepare for a physical battle against Jamshedpur FC in their upcoming match on Sunday in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL).

The club has so far managed to remain undefeated in their previous six encounters while gathering twelve points from three wins and draws each. Vukomanovic has stated that they want to continue to ride on the momentum they have generated so far this season.

Ahead of Kerala Blasters FC’s clash against Jamshedpur FC, the head coach along with striker Alvaro Vazquez addressed the media during a pre-match press conference.

Here are the excerpts of Vukomanovic’s press conference: 

KBFC faced Jamshedpur FC twice in the pre-season friendly with one loss and one was a draw. So, will there be any changes in the plan to face them from the last two matches?

Vukomanovic: Yes, of course. Because it was the period of the pre-season and they are completely different games now, almost in the middle of ISL both teams are playing a bit differently.

Both teams are playing with a different approach and a different mentality. Tomorrow I suppose that it should be a very hard, physical game, tough with lots of runnings and so we'll see tomorrow. Let the better team win.

Sitting comfortably in the top half of the table right now after winning the previous game, as you know, an opportunity is there that if you win the next game tomorrow with a certain goal margin you can actually go to about the top of the table. Is that something that you're looking forward to?

Vukomanovic: When you start the competition, when you start the season, you aim as far as possible. But you know, there are many circumstances, obstacles and opponents that you will face. So, now in our situation, we are the team who ended up last year, second from bottom. If we compare to last season, we have to shut up and work hard, that's all. And then everything that comes extra to us, it's really welcome.

In this situation, we just want to continue building up because in football it's about momentum. When you are sitting in good momentum, you have to continue building up. You have to continue working hard and playing game by game and then you will see what will be the outcome. So far we have had a good atmosphere, we have a good team, we have cohesion in our team that gives us confidence.

We have to stay together with the force to continue and try to collect the points, later on, we will sum up when we are closer to the end and we will see what are our objectives are, so we have to stay humble, continue working hard, that's it.

Anyone who has watched the Blasters’ past matches, will know the role of Jeakson Singh and Vincy Burretto alliance in the team's progress. How did you get the idea to give this midfield alliance another defensive job?

Vukomanovic: Well, first of all, both of them and especially a couple of other guys, but both of them, they have huge potential. They have possibilities and all the other aspects that give quality to this team. And of course, by working hard and working with consistency, these players, get more self-confidence. That's how you improve in football and that's how you become better. I'm glad to see how they evolve, how they become better and how they enjoy playing together and playing with the team. So, we observed and analyzed before this competition before the season that they have potential and as a coaching staff, they wanted to use it. That's why we are continuing doing it the same way and that's why for the moment we are happy with our midfield players.

What message would you like to send to the Kerala Blasters fans?

Vukomanovic: The Blasters have fans who would never give up on the team in times of setbacks. It's a huge support and we know that many of them, they're supporting and willing to see our team playing like this and winning games. And believe me till here in Goa, we feel that support. We feel the warmth, we feel everything they're sending to us. I'm sorry that we cannot play these games and we cannot have those victories in our stadium in front of that magnificent crowd. I hope the time will come soon, that this pandemic will end and that we can have the possibility. It's huge, huge respect towards them and hope we will continue like that. Big thanks to them.

Here are the excerpts from Vazquez’s press conference:

You played three games in eight days. How did you and the team manage to recover in very few days?

Vazquez: No problem. The medical staff and physios have done great work with the players.

In the last match against Chennaiyin FC, you and (Jorge) Diaz changed each other's position, whose idea was it? And how did it affect your game?

Vazquez: It's very easy to play with such transition. Jorge and I would move in the space on the sides, if one goes deep, then the other one drops down and it is easy to play with him because we know each other. This is something we have done in the training as well.

You’ve played in La Liga and English Premier League for the most part of your career, where does ISL stand in comparison to it?

Vazquez: First I'm very happy to be here. It's a great league with great players. The Indian players surprised me positively. The La Liga and the Premier League are the two best leagues in the world. It's different but I am happy. I score goals here, win the games and hope I continue.

Your Comments