Des Buckingham buoyant ahead of an ‘exciting’ game against Chennaiyin FC in the Super Cup

Mumbai City FC has officially confirmed the departure of its longest-serving Head Coach, Des Buckingham, as he takes on a new challenge with English club Oxford United in EFL League One.

Kerala, 18th April 2023: The competition in the Super Cup is heating up as the last matchday of the Group Stage is on the horizon. Mumbai City FC are set to take on Chennaiyin FC in their last Group D game on the 19th of April at the Payyanad Stadium in Manjeri, Kerala for a virtual knockout clash between the two ISL clubs.

Mumbai City FC lost 2-1 to NorthEast United FC in their most recent game in the Super Cup, in a game that was thoroughly dominated by the Islanders but were unlucky to lose to a resolute Highlanders side.

While talking about the game against NorthEast United, Mumbai City head coach Des Buckingham spoke about his side’s comprehensive performance. He said, “I was pleased with how we played. All the internal measures that we have were as high, if not higher in some areas than the marks that we try and hold ourselves to. Unfortunately, the external measure, the end result was 2-1 to NorthEast. We hit the crossbar twice. We had two clear penalties turned down. We had other chances which we could’ve normally and would’ve scored. So, when I monitor and measure our performances across that game, I was. Very happy with how we played in the game.”

The 38-year-old Englishman went on to talk about how his squad is preparing for what will be a virtual knockout game against Chennaiyin FC. Buckingham said, “Chennaiyin are at full strength. They’re a good team. We’ve played them twice so far this season in the league, and they were competitive games. As always, we will do what we’ve done in all the games – make sure we get ourselves as prepared as we can to do what we want to try and do.”

Mumbai City FC and Chennaiyin FC have clashed twice in the league and once in the Durand Cup already this season with the Islanders winning all three meetings. Across the three games, the Islanders have scored 13 and conceded 6 goals against Chennaiyin FC. Speaking on what he expects from the game, Des Buckingham said, “it will certainly be an exciting one. We know, both teams are going into the game, they need to win it if they want to stand a chance of progressing. Tournament football always sets games up for an exciting 90 minutes.”

He concluded by talking about how his young all-Indian squad has been performing in the Super Cup so far, “We’ll be doing everything we can to showcase our football and showcase how good our players can be and our team can be regardless of what players we field. Whether it’s the young ones or the older ones – I say older but we haven’t got many older ones in our squad right now – it’s a wonderful experience for them to showcase not that they are capable of competing against a good ISL team, also showcasing the style of football that we want to continue playing, regardless of what player takes the pitch.”

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