Sports News | We Have to Play for Pride: FC Goa Coach Derrick Pereira

Sports News | We Have to Play for Pride: FC Goa Coach Derrick Pereira

Panaji (Goa) [India], February 19 (ANI): FC Goa may only have miniscule chances of securing a playoffs berth following their defeat against ATK Mohun Bagan earlier this week, but their job is far from done. On Saturday, the Gaurs will take on Hyderabad FC where, according to head coach Derrick Pereira, they will play for pride.

Led by Manolo Marquez, Hyderabad are in great form. They have won eight out of their 16 games so far, and are at the top of the points table with 29 to their name. The likes of Bartholomew Ogbeche, Javier Siverio and Joao Victor have performed well and will pose a tough challenge for Goa.

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When the two teams faced each other earlier this season, the result was a 1-1 draw. The Men in Orange would be keen to do better and return home with the three points when they clash again on Saturday night.

In the pre-match press conference, Derrick Pereira admitted that it is difficult for the team to aim for a spot in the top-four by the end of the league stage.

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“It’s really tough now. We have to play for pride. We are looking to go into the game with our best intentions and hope for the best. Times are really tough in the ISL bio-bubble. For instance, we couldn’t train prior to our most recent game against ATK Mohun Bagan. We had some COVID-19 positive cases in the camp and hence couldn’t figure out our first XI till we reached the dressing room. These are not excuses, this is just the reality,” he explained.

“Today morning, we got a couple of new COVID-19 positive cases. There also are players who have played with injuries – so once again we’re not sure about tomorrow,” Pereira further added.

From what the head coach has said, it looks like the Gaurs have a really tough job at hand – especially considering Hyderabad FC’s current form. Everyone saw what a full-strength FC Goa side can do during their 5-0 drubbing of Chennaiyin FC, but with the team no longer enjoying that privilege, they may find it difficult to get past Manolo Marquez and co. with a win.

As they say, however, it’s not over until it’s over. As long as mathematical equations afford FC Goa the slightest of chances to qualify for the playoffs, they should and will fight with that objective in mind.

Winning each of their remaining three games including the clash against Hyderabad FC will take the Gaurs’ tally to 27 points. They will then have to depend on other teams’ results to see if they can make it to the top four.

Speaking about Saturday’s game, the Men in Orange are expected to have some changes in terms of their playing XI. With Hyderabad FC also following a possession-based playing style similar to that of Goa’s, midfield supremacy and clinically in attack will become key for both teams. (ANI)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from Syndicated News feed, LatestLY Staff may not have modified or edited the content body)

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