With the second round of I-League qualifiers 2020 matches coming up, Mohammedan SC will be looking to put their missed chances from their previous game behind them and aim to pick up the three points against newbies ARA FC at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Sunday, October 11.
Speaking on the eve of the game, Mohammedan Head Coach Yan Law stressed on the innumerable chances that his side missed in the previous match. Star striker Willis Plaza’s penalty hit the woodwork, and another clear cut chance also had the same fate against Garhwal FC.
“It is unfortunate that we missed so many chances in the last game. We even hit the woodwork twice. It just wasn’t our day. Perhaps it was down to a lack of concentration in the final third, but we have been working on it during our training sessions," said Law.
“We have also had a few review sessions on what needs to be done for the next match. The boys are all charged up again. They are eager to pick up the three points again," he continued.
Meanwhile ARA FC, who were the first side from Ahmedabad to play in the Second Division League last season will be playing their first match of the I-League qualifiers, the first sporting event to be held in India.
Head coach Vivek Nagul echoed the sentiments of the squad, who are eager to return to football after a long time. “The boys are playing really well. When you are going to play a match for the first time in such a long time, the mood in the camp is bound to be good," said Nagul.
He stated that his charges were prepared to carry their form from last season, when they ended at the top of their respective zonal group. “We had a very good performance in the Second Division League last season, and the spirits are high as the boys want to carry that form into this season. Mohammedan are a strong side, but we believe that we can perform on the given day and take the points," he said.
The ARA head coach believes that due to the current format of the I-League qualifiers, means that his side will treat the round-robin matches as knockout games.
“Every match is like a final for us. So we are going at it with the objective of picking up three points per game," he said.
Mohammedan boss Law, on the other hand, believes that his counterparts have a slight advantage, as ARA would have had an opportunity to get a look at Mohammedan’s last game, a privilege that he himself would not have had.
“They definitely watched and analysed us from the last game which is why they could have an upper hand. But we also have a few tricks up our sleeves," said Law.