Odisha FC manager Josep Gombau has thanked Pune for letting them find a temporary home venue and expressed his desire to start their home stint with three points against ATK on Tuesday. The Spaniard has acknowledged that ATK have been a tough opponent lately but has vowed to stick to his philosophy.
Odisha FC have been the only side in ISL not to play a single home match so far in the ongoing ISL season with four matches already played. With Kalinga Stadium under renovation, the Juggernauts have been shifted to Pune to initiate their home fixtures, where they would be hosting ATK, Bengaluru FC, and Hyderabad FC.
The new ISL entrants have amassed four points from the last two matches after succumbing to last-minute defeats in the opening two fixtures and would need to continue their momentum if Josep Gombau is aiming to make any sort of impact in his second ISL season. And the manager has made his intentions known ahead of the tough tie against the Kolkata-based side.
“I expect a very tough game. I think ATK is doing very well. They are top of the table and they have very good footballers. We have to compete against every single team in this league. And I think it will be a good battle. We want to start our journey here in Pune with three points,” said Gombau in the pre-match press conference, reported ISL website.
The 13-day international break was very much needed for all ISL teams after the first phase saw multiple injuries for different teams. The second phase would see games coming hard and fast for Odisha and Gombau hasn’t been oblivious to the fact that the most opportune time would be now.
“It is a very important match for us. I think that after the restart, it is important to start in a good way. We have four games in two weeks now. We had time to prepare for the game and I think the players are ready. We will do a good job,” added Gombau.
ATK and Odisha have approached the season quite varyingly from a tactical point of view. While Odisha have been more seamless and free-flowing under Gombau on their ultra-offensive movements, ATK have been more physical and robust in their strategy, trying to outmuscle every opponent of theirs.
ATK have scored 10 goals so far, conceding three, while Odisha gave scored six and conceded the same. However, 43-year-old Gombau has been adamant with his philosophy and stated that his team would stick to it.
“We have our own way of playing football. We don’t change depending on the opponent. We have a certain way of playing and we will keep playing the same way. We are a team which is built for attacking football,” he concluded.
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