The artificial turf at Cooperage will play to our advantage : Khalid Jamil, Mumbai FC, Head Coach

Mumbai FC coach Khalid Jamil at the announcement of the Mumbai FC’s sponsorship deal with Playwin and the release of their official jersey on Tuesday.

I-League football makes its much awaited return to Mumbai when Sporting Club de Goa visit the revamped Cooperage Stadium to play Mumbai FC on Sunday evening.

It will be an emotional moment for Mumbai FC and its fans as their beloved club will finally get a chance to entertain them in familiar surroundings.

Speaking at a press conference to announce Mumbai FC’s sponsorship deal with Play Win, Khalid Jamil expressed his delight at being back to Mumbai, playing their home game. “We are absolutely delighted to be back playing our home games at Cooperage, a place which is close to my heart. It’s a place I connect with and I totally expect the fans to flock the stadium in our support”.

Cooperage which was under renovation for five years, is now ready for the big ocassion. Newly constructed stands with bucket seats, a specialized press box and a newly laid astro turf proves that fact.

Cooperage uses an artificial turf and it is the only stadium in the I-League to do so. Coach Khalid Jamil believes his side’s familiarity with the pitch, having played matches of the MDFA Elite Division there will give them an edge over their visitors.

“I think the artificial turf will be an advantage for us. It is not easy to play your game on it straight away if you are not used to it”.

But Khalid Jamil was quick to point out that it will be the performance and not the pitch, that will decide the outcome.  “We can’t leave it to the pitch, as if we don’t play well, we will not be winning”.

Mumbai FC’s top scorer Josimar Da Silva too hailed the importance of playing at Cooperage. “Playing in Mumbai, here at Cooperage gives me and the players an extra confidence as we are used to playing here and we love it here”.

There is an excitement around Cooperage about Mumbai FC’s homecoming which is likely to be translated into an electric atmosphere on Sunday.

The homecoming couldn’t have come at a better time for Mumbai FC as they are yet to open their account in this season’s I-League and will look at their supporters to lift them.

Atul Badgamia, the Deputy Vice-President of Mumbai FC believes the crowd will account to two extra men in favour of his side.”We expect the crowd to turn up in large numbers and it will be like two additional players for us”.

Mumbai FC are making all the right noises off the pitch ahead of their homecoming and its now down to the players to replicate it on the pitch.

The fans in Mumbai have been deprived of top level football for way too long and it’s time Mumbai FC treat them with something special.

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