Costa happy with Mumbai City’s response

The Asian Age.  | Irfan Haji

Sports, Football

The city-based franchise has bounced back twice in the league after disappointing losses.

The team has shown ability to comeback twice in the league under Costa.

Mumbai City FC team showed great character to bounce back after humiliating 5-0 loss to Goa on Wednesday. Gaffer Jorge Costa’s boys maintained their unbeaten home record against Delhi Dynamos after five encounters having won four including 2-0 win at Mumbai Football Arena on Saturday.

The team has shown ability to comeback twice in the league under Costa. They started with 2-0 loss to Jamshedpur FC at home but earned a well deserved away point against Kerala Blasters and later won Maharashtra Derby at home by outclassing sloppy FC Pune City  by 2-0.

They looked literally down and out especially in the last 20 minutes in Goa and had just couple of days to regroup.

“I told my players that we made mistakes in Goa and reminded them that apart from the final 20 minutes, we played well against Goa, so we could just forget about that. And I’m happy with how the team responded. Today we had a good game against Delhi. We had three days to sit down and reflect on this and I think we did well,” he said.

“When you lose it’s not easy to have your mind in the right place. But we did not give up. We showed today that we have a lot of character,” he added.

Though early days in the League but Costa accepts they need to cash on opportunities to improve their goal difference especially after losing by big margin. His best two players to take penalties, Rafael Bastos and Lucian Goian, have missed a penalty each at home.

“Yes that (missing penalties) is a concern. We could have scored more and shouldn’t have settled for just two goals. We created a lot of opportunities and even missed a penalty. But we took all three points and I’m happy.” Goian missed penalty against Pune and Bastos against Delhi on Saturday.

The team has now a week to recover before an away trip to defending champions, Chennaiyin FC on November 3 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai. Chennaiyin have disastrous start to the campaign and are currently placed ninth with just a point from five games.

The Portuguese coach is satisfied with how his players have fared so far.

“We pressed against Goa too and did well in the game apart from the last 20 minutes. My philosophy is to press high and create chances. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. This is what I want the team to do in every game.”

With Amrinder Singh injured, reserve goalkeeper Ravi Kumar stepped up well to show good reflexes and anticipation to keep Dynamos attackers at bay.

“I think Ravi Kumar had a very good game. He gave the confidence to the team and this is very important. This shows that everyone is working very hard. I’m very happy with all the 25 players in my squad.”