Chennaiyin’s belief intact as champs hunt for first win

Chennaiyin FC coach John Gregory is not losing faith in his players, despite being unable to win a point from their first two matches.

The defending champions lost both their matches in this edition of Hero Indian Super League and will want to settle for nothing less than a victory when they face NorthEast United FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Chennai, on Thursday.

The barren run is not something that coach John Gregory is used to. They’ve struggled for bits in the past, and the English coach remains confident that they can now turn the corner. The last time Chennaiyin had a three match loosing run was in 2015.

“NorthEast have had a fantastic start to the season and we have to respect them. They beat ATK and almost beat Goa. They should have won that game. But I have to show belief in my players. They have the capability to win it for us,” said Gregory.

While Chennaiyin’s first match against Bengaluru FC proved to be a tightly knit affair that ended 1-0 in favour of the latter, they were overcome 3-1 by FC Goa at their home ground in the second game. NorthEast United, on the other hand, are a revamped unit under the tutelage of Dutch tactician Eelco Schattorie. With former PSG forward Bartholomew Ogbeche leading the attack, the Highlanders will offer a threat to any defence in the league.

“We can compete with any ISL team but Chennai has more individual quality than us. They have a few weaknesses and hopefully, we can exploit that,” said the Dutch coach. Schattorie saw his side go toe-to-toe with a dominant FC Goa and match up to their attacking football, clinching a 2-2 draw. Then they went on to defeat ATK in Kolkata. Schattorie is mindful of the individual quality Chennaiyin possesses, and the soaring temperature in Chennai is not lost on him either.

“It is always difficult (after a break). The biggest challenge is to adapt to the humidity in Chennai. It was really hot when we trained in the morning. Evening seems to be better,” said Schattorie. For Chennaiyin FC, striker Jeje Lalpekhlua will hope for better service from midfield after drawing blanks in the two games so far. In the absence of injured Dhanpal Ganesh, Anirudh Thapa and Germanpreet Singh will be expected to step up and shore up the midfield, allowing the likes of Raphael Augusto to venture forward in attack.

“Jeje has that capability. He just needs to stay relaxed and be focused. Once they get the first goal, everything else follows up. Similarly, a win is all we need to turn our season around,” Gregory said. The momentum, though, is firmly with the Highlanders and they will do their best to deny Chennaiyin their first win of the season.

Also Read: Chennaiyin’s belief intact as champs hunt for first win 

Also Read: NEUFC Rehenesh Under Interim Suspension

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more updated on Mumbai & Indian Football 

Young Guns Football Acadmey to conduct trials for their upcoming MFA 3rd Division Campaign

MFA 3rd Division club Young Guns Football Academy will be conducting open trials on October 9th for their upcoming season in Mumbai Football Young Guns Football Academy was founded in…


OSCAR SSE to conduct trials for Youth I League and YPL team in the U13 category in Mumbai

Mumbai-based OSCAR SSE will conduct trials for their Youth I League and YPL team on 16th and 17th July 2022 at Wings Sports Centre ground. Oscar SSE is a 2-star…


ROQS to host trials for MFA Super Division

ROQS is revamping their squad for the upcoming season of the MFA Super Division. The team is organising trials for the men’s football team on Monday, 11th of July, 2022….


MSP Academy is holding trials for the upcoming MFA Youth League

MFA Super Division club Mumbai Soccer Prodigies will be conducting trials for their MFA Youth League campaign on 22nd May 2022 in Bandra, Mumbai. Founded in 2006, the Mumbai Soccer…


Football School of India to conduct Youth Trials

Mumbai-based Football School of India is going to conduct youth trials for its boys and girls squads. The trials will be conducted for players in the age group of under-13…


Bengaluru FC Elite Youth Football Trials

Bengaluru Football Club is a professional club that competes in the Indian Super League (ISL) and are past champions of the I-League and ISL. The club has launched its Soccer…


D’Souza Football Academy to conduct Youth Trials

Mumbai-based D’Souza Football Academy is going to conduct football scholarship trials for its youth squads. The trials will be conducted for players in the age group of under-7 to under-15….


Oscar SSE to conduct trials for Youth I-League in U13, U15&U18 category in Mumbai

OSCAR SSE, an AIFF Accredited Academy invites all  U13, U15 & U18  players from ALL SOCIO-ECONOMIC  backgrounds for football trials to join our Elite teams to train round the year…


Air India to conduct senior team trials for MFA Elite League on Monday

Mumbai-based Air India FC is set to conduct trials for their Senior Team to play the MFA Elite (Corporate) Division. One of the top-tier clubs from Mumbai – Air India…


Air India to hold youth team trials on Monday

Mumbai-based Air India FC is set to conduct trials for their Youth Team for the MFA Super (Corporate) Division. One of the top-tier clubs from Mumbai – Air India will…