Winless in two games, Bengaluru FC coach Carles Cuadrat ruled out any reason for worry as his side readies to take on second-placed Jamshedpur FC at the JRD Tata Sports Complex, on Sunday. The Blues have started their ISL campaign with two draws but the Spaniard is pleased with the way his team has gone about their football in both games, and reckons it’s only a case of being stronger mentally before the points come in.
“When you look at it from the perspective of the table, yes, we’ve dropped four points from a possible six. But our tactics have been perfect. There were so many positives from the draw against Goa last week and we’ll do well to build on those. On the night, the point we took away was unfair given the performance we turned up with. But this happens in football and the boys understand it well. It only means we have to be stronger mentally,” said Cuadrat.
Ashique Kuruniyan, playing at left-back, conceded a penalty in injury time that Ferran Corominas converted, to give Goa a lifeline they had done little to deserve. But the Bengaluru boss said the youngster had his backing. “In football you learn from the kind of mistakes Ashique made on Monday. Gurpreet conceded a penalty and got sent off the first time we played Goa away. Nishu conceded a penalty against Kerala, and Khabra against Northeast. These are all lessons you learn from. Ashique is a fantastic footballer and I’m sure he has grown after that game,” said Cuadrat.
In Jamshedpur, Bengaluru have opponents who have had the perfect start to the League, winning both games, and Cuadrat expects Antonio Iriondo’s side to pose more than just a tough challenge in what will be their third game at home on the spin. “Antonio Iriondo is coach that comes with a wealth of experience and has been known to bring the most out of the teams he has managed. Jamshedpur are in a good moment with two wins in as many games and we know what we are up against.”
The Miners used the transfer window to add as many as four Spaniards in Aitor Monroy, Piti, Sergio Castel and Noe Acosta to their squad and it’s evident that Iriondo is building his system around the new recruits.
For Bengaluru, midfielder Erik Paartalu continues his recovery from an ankle injury suffered during pre-season and hasn’t traveled with the squad. Cuadrat, though, said the Australian is likely to be back next weekend for the game against Chennaiyin FC at the Kanteerava.
Defender Albert Serran’s return to the squad after missing out on Bengaluru’s opener with injury could hand Cuadrat, who has started with the same eleven for two games, a few more options with the way the Blues set out in shape on Sunday.
The match kicks off at 7.30 pm and will be telecast on the Star Sports network and Hotstar.