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ISL   /   Chennaiyin FC   /   NorthEast United   /  

ISL 2017-18: NEUFC coach happy with his players' performance while Pasha admits it was a bad day at office

NORTHEAST UNITED emerged as winners against Chennaiyin FC, courtesy Len Doungel's hat-trick. Speaking at the post match press conference coach Avram Grant appreciated his player's performance.

"This was our first game of the second round (phase of the league stage), and we were facing a top-placed team. So, it was not easy. But we wanted to show that we can change things around, and it’s good to start with a win."

"But more than the win, I am happy with the performance of the players who showed good spirit. They played a clever, intelligent game. We scored three goals, we can score even more. And the other team that had very good attacking players had only one or two chances in the game. So, I am happy for the players."

He also wished that the same can be continued,

"They have good spirit, so it’s easy to work with them. Of course, there were things that did not work before, and we wanted them to work. It started with the game against FC Goa. They are also a top-placed team. Even last week was not a bad performance (against ATK). We lost after we created chances, but the opponent scored a fantastic goal. So, I think we should develop from game to game and pick points. The players are responding well, and the staff is doing a good job also."

Talking about the reason for the difference, he said,

"You cannot be a magician in a few days. But we paid attention to two things. First, all my life, my teams were attacking teams. So, I believe in this. Secondly, that was one of the weaknesses of the team; they did not score goals. So, we did a lot of work in our practice, we spoke a lot about the mental side, the mentality you can change if you want it to change. And they wanted to change. So, in these two aspects we did well. But also, the team is working well, so in the last three games there were only four or five chances against us which will give more confidence to the team. And even today, we could have scored more goals."

Meanwhile, Chennaiyin's assistant coach Sabir Pasha said that it was a bad at work for his team.

"It happens, we came back strongly in the end and we had some chances, but I think we made a great effort in the last 20 minutes. We cannot take anything away from the players. They have been great. Whatever position we are at now is because of the players. We have been doing so well. It was one off day for us, and we can’t go deep into that. We have to come back again."

Talking about Bikramjit Singh's absence, he said,

"He has this injury issue from before. So, we got him right. But he did not feel confident. He wanted to play but we did not want to risk him. We wanted to keep him for the next match."

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