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ISL 2019 | Very difficult but not impossible to qualify, reveals Steve Coppell

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ISL 2019 | Very difficult but not impossible to qualify, reveals Steve Coppell

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SportsCafe Desk


ATK head coach Steve Coppell has claimed that qualifying for the knockout stage is very difficult but not entirely impossible. Meanwhile, Mumbai City FC boss Jorge Costa is adamant that his team’s fate lies in their own hands and they should only depend on themselves to make the knockout stage.

The current season of the Indian Super League is shaping up to be an interesting affair as all teams in the league are fighting hard to make a positive end to the current season. The upcoming clash between Mumbai City FC and World ATK will add spice to the ending stage of the group stage as both teams are in the fray of a spot in the play-off stage. World ATK coach Steve Coppell has admitted that his team only have an outside chance of progressing to the knockout stage but added that the mission is not impossible to achieve.

“It’s very difficult to qualify, but it’s possible to qualify. So, we cling onto that hope. Just as any ordinary game of football, we’d like to win the game. If we were to win the game, Mumbai will be in reach of us. If we win the game, we’d have a better head-to-head against Mumbai. So, you never know what can happen,” Coppell said at a pre-match interview.

Meanwhile, opposition coach Jorge Costa, will also back his young and vibrant Mumbai City FC side to put the pressure on the visiting team who lie two places below them on the ISL ranking table.

“We are in better position, that is true. We are depending on ourselves and not on other things. So, we are in better position knowing that ATK can also reach the top four. I’m not expecting an easy game tomorrow. It will a difficult game against a very good team. They have good Indian and foreign players with a very good coach with a lot of experience. It will be a difficult game for us. What we don’t want is to wait for the last game,” Costa said at the pre-match interview.

The Portuguese tactician then spoke about the last few games that Mumbai have underperformed in. The Islanders, who are third on the table, will travel to Kolkata and play at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan.

“So, in the last three games, we haven’t performed like we do usually. We had some injuries, we had some players suspended. We made a lot of mistakes. That can explain the bad results we are having. We must also look inside and see that we are making a lot of mistakes. I still believe in this team. Before this game, we had nine games without losing. So, for sure something has happened. But I’m very confident that tomorrow we can be the same Mumbai City FC that was there in the first 14-15 games,” said Costa.

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