Hyderabad, Goa go to battle at Bambolim

HyderabadFC - Sakshi Post

Tough clash on hand as Manolo’s men aim to consolidate position in top-4

Goa: After an impressive performance against NorthEast United on Monday, Hyderabad FC are back in action as they face Juan Ferrando’s FC Goa in an away game at Bambolim on Saturday night. The clash will be their second 9:30 pm kick in the Indian Super League this season.

Currently 8th in the standings with six points, the Gaurs had a less than impressive start to their league season but are slowly finding their feet, having registered a couple of close victories over Bengaluru and SC East Bengal in their last two games. With their form coming into this game, HFC Head Coach Manolo Marquez believes that this could be yet another tight game for his side.

“It is not normal that they lost three games in a row, after the record unbeaten run at the end of the last season. They seem to have changed their system in the last two games but still play really good football, sticking to their style,” said Manolo.

“It will be a tough game but like every week it is a difficult game for us and it will be a difficult game for Goa as well,” he added.

Goa have the likes of Alberto Noguera, Edu Bedia, Glan Martins, Ivan Gonzalez, Airan Cabrera, and Devendra Murgaonkar in fine touch in recent games. However, Ferrando revealed that Brandon Fernandes will continue to be on the sidelines. The Gaurs will also miss the services of Jorge Ortiz, who picked up a red card in the previous game against Bengaluru FC.

“Goa play good football and I like their style. They want to keep the ball and try to play football, which I prefer as well,” said Manolo who believes it won’t be an easy game.

“When they have the ball, we have to defend and when we recover the ball, we have to try and avoid their press and play our game and try to put pressure on them. I think the team that is better in all these aspects will win this game,” he added.

Coach Manolo has an in-form attack with Bart Ogbeche leading the goalscorers chart in the ISL. Javi Siverio and Aniket Jadhav also scored their first goals in HFC colors in the last game while Edu Garcia and Joel Chianese are also starting to have an increased impact.

A settled backline and a solid midfield however, have been the strengths of Hyderabad, who will look to put in another all-round performance on Saturday, to try to build on their winning momentum.

“For us, only a quarter of the competition is done and we have to stay focused and continue playing at our best. But at the moment, we are only thinking about the game on Saturday, which will not be easy for both sides,” said the Spaniard.

Hyderabad FC are currently in 3rd with 10 points on the league table and could move to 2nd with a win in this game, irrespective of other results. Goa, on the other hand, could move to fourth and within a point of HFC if they manage to take all three points at the weekend.

The game kicks off at 9:30 pm on Saturday and will be telecasted live on the Star Sports Network with live streaming on Disney+ Hotstar and JioTV.

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