The Kerala Blasters coach is happy that his side qualifies for the semi final in ISL season 3 though they have a tough and slow start this season.
In their last match the Kerala Blasters beat the Northeast United side by 1-0 at their home and they fix their spot in the ISL semis, Chekiyot Vineeth the Indian winger scored the winning goal for his squad.
In the first half both the teams are not able to break their deadlock and the English coach expressed his view
“NorthEast had a decent amount of possession without really troubling us. We had the best chance in the opening half too when Duckens (Nazon) charged through. I was glad when we reached the halftime at 0-0. It meant the game was now a 45-minute affair. I just felt we started the second half okay. I think both teams did not know how to approach the game - whether to throw men forward or whether to be secure.
“Obviously, the goal broke the ice. But I just felt that the longer the game went on, the stronger we were. I felt we were not really fluid but the pace and power we had up front would create problems for them. Eventually it did,”
Kerala Blaster were missing the service of Mehtab Hossain he got suspended for the tie and also their another key player Josu got injured during their training, in last match their another player played brilliant football for his team.
The coach voiced: “I think it was a bit of stalemate in midfield and it probably suited us. Their midfield probably had a little bit more power with Romaric, Borges and Wellington. I didn't want an end-to-end game. It wouldn't have been good for us. I think Ishfaq did a great job around Romaric because he is a potential match-winner. I think Velez not being available also helped our cause. He's been a terrific player for them. We knew he would be touch and go. Unfortunately for him, he did not play but it turned out to be fortunate for us.
“Mehtab has done a tremendous job for us this season, playing with Azrack in midfield. To disturb that affected us. We lost Josu as well - he's been terrific for us as well. We had to adjust and Ishfaq came in and did a gritty, determined job. He was specifically asked to get tight on Romaric. All in all, it was always going to be a scrappy and ugly game. But the prize was big and I'm thankful that we got through,”