XtraTime Web Desk: Kolkata giant Kingfisher East Bengal to take Mumbai City FC in their opening fixture of Hero Super Cup on Thursday, at Kalinga Stadium Bhubaneswar.
East Bengal will prefer to read the opponent’s game plan before attacking as the ISL club is a new opponent to them.
“We have to be positive before hitting the pitch tomorrow. We are not thinking about the past. East Bengal has a matured set of players who have trained very hard for last few days before coming here,” Coach Khalid Jamil said at the pre-match press conference on Wednesday.
“Surely we’ll tweak our strategy for a knockout game. We have to be more patient. We have to be very alert defensively and mentally strong to get the job done,” Jamil added.
Everyone sans Md. Rafique is available for selection and that would surely provide Jamil more options to try out.
Brazilian defender Eduardo Ferreira added, “The preparation has been same for us. We are very serious and we know how better they are as a team. We are training quite hard.
Mumbai City FC coach Alexandre Guimaraes expressed his joy to be back in the tournament having overcome a resilient Indian Arrows in the qualifiers.
“First of all, it’s nice to be back again in the tournament. We had a tough game against Indian Arrows. Every game is going down the wire and every team has to toil hard to get the success”, the Costa Rica-based coach mentioned.
“We respect our opponent but we are here with a strong will to win. We know that we are going to play a team who has a great history and legacy.”
Agile winger Sahil Tavora also chipped in and said that the Indian players are aware of the legacy that their counterparts have but they are not taking the game differently than another competitive game.
“We have seen their games and we are planning accordingly. It’s not going to be an easy game for us. They are a very strong team.”
Meanwhile, they have come with two foreigners and the coach feels this is an opportunity for the local boys to step up and live up to the expectations.
“This is the time for our local guys to take the responsibility and show their potential on the pitch. We have seen a few of their matches and surely tomorrow’s match is going to very competitive and taxing one”, Guimarães stated.