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ISL 2023-24: Mumbai City FC eye important win on the road against Chennaiyin FC

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Mumbai, Feb 22 (IANS) The Mumbai City FC juggernaut is on the roll and the defending champions of the League Winners Shield are building momentum at a steady pace, having registered three wins out of their last four, in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24. They are now eyeing an important victory in an away game against Chennaiyin FC, hoping to continue with the momentum.

In the previous meeting, the Islanders came out on top against Chennaiyin FC with a 3-0 win at the Mumbai Football Arena, and will no doubt be looking for more of the same.

Speaking ahead of the game, head coach Petr Kratky said, “It was very important for us to win back-to-back games. We have to continue with our good work and then keep repeating it as often as we can in the future.”

While Mumbai City FC won at a canter in their home game against Chennaiyin, Friday will be a new day and things will be different. The coach said, “It will be a difficult game, and we have to be switched on from the very first minute. The team is a quality one and they have a good coach, and they are at home so it will be a difficult game for us. We will approach the game like every other game, we will look to start well and keep going from there.”

Going into the important game in Chennai, Mumbai City FC, who are the holders of the ISL Shield, must maintain the high levels of performance, the coach said.

“We have a squad comprising very good players, and the competition in the squad is extremely healthy. Everyone wants to play and wants to perform which is very good for the side. We have a good squad and we are looking to keep our performance levels high,” Kratky asserted.

The coach further went on to express his delight at the fact that the team has been functioning well. He said, “It is a collective effort always, we always speak about it. If everyone defends and everyone attacks, we do well, and it shows in the shots and the clean sheets. Always for us, it is a team effort and we try to do as much as we can together. That is the key for us.”

The Islanders have kept a couple of clean sheets recently, and speaking on the defensive unit, Akash Mishra said, “The way we train is the way we play in our matches as well. We have Rahul Bheke, Tiri, Mehtab and Krouma, and others who are senior players, who have plenty of experience. I am the youngest in the defensive set-up and we get great guidance from the seniors, which helps improve our defensive unit. And like the coach said, we all work together in defense or attack, and this is very important, because if we do well in the back, then it allows our forwards to play freely.”

Looking ahead to the crucial game in Chennai, Mishra said it won’t be easy.

“It is never easy when we go for an away game, because the opposition has a home advantage on their side. But we are treating this like any other game, and we are focused on coming away with a positive result. Chennaiyin have a good defense, but I am confident in our forwards that they will produce the goods,” he signed off.

--IANS

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