Despite a 2-0 defeat at the hands of ISL debutants Bengaluru FC, Mumbai City head coach Alexandre Guimaraes has stated that it is too early to term BFC as front-runners to win the tournament. Guimaraes also doesn’t agree with the opinion that Bengaluru’s vociferous fans intimidated his players.
Mumbai City FC’s 2017-18 ISL journey started on a disappointing note as they succumbed to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Bengaluru FC at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Sunday. Mumbai put on a sturdy defensive display but Bengaluru’s Eduardo Garcia and Sunil Chhetri managed to penetrate their resistance to give the hosts a memorable 2-0 victory. In the post-match press conference, Mumbai’s head coach Alexandre Guimaraes did not shy away from applauding Albert Roca’s men but stated that it was too early to label the former I-League champions as favorites to lift the cup.
"Many people are saying that (BFC are hot
"There are too many games to go. As the tournament progresses, we will see really who are the contenders for this edition of ISL. We always try to win, that’s our goal. Although we had a few upsets and injuries, that is no excuse as Bengaluru definitely played really well. But it’s a good learning experience and we now know what we need to do for our next game (against FC Goa).”
Bengaluru FC has the distinction of having one of the most passionate fan bases in the country and the ‘West Block Blues’ packed the stadium in huge numbers to create an electric and hostile atmosphere for the first match against Mumbai. Guimaraes, however, rubbished the opinion that the visitors were undone by the Bengaluru fans’ intimidation.
“The first game is always difficult, especially going up against a team that has played together for a longer time. But the atmosphere was fantastic and cannot be used as an excuse for what the final result is. The first half wasn’t as good as the second, as we then realized what we had to do. After the necessary changes were made, we covered up the empty spaces on the field which the other team previously used against us. Also, scoring goals is the main objective of any game and that is something we need to focus more on,” the 58-year-old Costa Rican said.