CHENNAIYIN FC got back on track with their dominant 3-0 performance against NorthEast United at home on Thursday. But what impressed coach John Gregory was that his team kept a clean sheet.
Talking about the same at the post match press conference, he said,
"I probably took more pleasure from not conceding a goal tonight, than I did from the overall result tonight. Obviously, a great result and a great performance but to keep a clean sheet for me, is where the future lies, we need to do this every week. The best teams that win leagues and get to the play-offs are sides that can keep a clean sheet. Defensively, our boys were excellent."
Brazilian Raphael Augusto was the star of the night as he played a role in the opening goal and then got the second one too. This performance coming from him with not being fully fit. The coach lauded his performance and spoke on the positions he was being played.
"You saw that he took off a strapping which he had on his knee after about 15-20 minutes. He’s been battling with aches and pains. Rafa is probably about 85-90% fit but you saw his performance, he was crucial during the two goals. We got him in kinds of positions where we knew that he could hurt the opposition and he did with his involvement in the two goals and that’s why we gave him a rest for the last 15-20 minutes or so and brought Jaime Gavilan on the pitch. Rafa had an outstanding game, he’s an outstanding player. You have to allow him to express himself and he certainly did that tonight."
He also had praises for Bikramjit Singh and Dhanpal Ganesh. Recalling an incident with Dhanpal, he said,
"I sent Ganesh a text this morning. He was still asleep on his bed. I sent him a text saying, I want to see you in the breakfast room in 15 minutes and he came in to see me and was absolutely petrified that I was going to punish him for something."
"I was in fact giving him some good news that he was probably going to play tonight. So, his face changed immediately when he realized that he wasn’t in trouble. So, I just told him to get ready for tonight. And he just went on and played fantastically well, he was in the middle of everything and was very, very tired in the end. He played the game at such high intensity, he had an outstanding game and obviously, it was a good team effort. The two young boys, they were both outstanding in that midfield. Bikramjit covered a lot of ground tonight, he came off with a little cramp, they’ll take a lot of pleasure in helping us win 3-0."
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