CFC continues to thrive under Coyle

Head coach pleased with Chennaiyin’s dominance in 3-1 victory over ATK
CFC continues to thrive under Coyle
Chennaiyin FC sits fifth in the ISL 2019-20 standings with 25 points from 16 matches

Chennai

High-flying Chennaiyin FC extended its unbeaten run in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2019-20 to six matches as it defeated ATK 3-1 at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Sunday.

Overseas recruits Rafael Crivellaro, Andre Schembri and Nerijus Valskis found the net for CFC, which is chasing a spot in the play-offs. With the victory against two-time champion ATK, Owen Coyle-coached Chennaiyin (25 points) finds itself in the fifth spot, one point behind Mumbai City FC, which currently holds the last qualifying position.

In the post-match press conference, CFC gaffer Coyle, who replaced John Gregory at the helm six games into the ongoing campaign, shared his views on the fantastic win.

“We had so many chances. We actually made it difficult for us by not scoring more goals. I watched ATK’s last performance, which was its best this season. So, we knew that we had to be at our best against it,” said the Scotsman.

Crivellaro and Schembri gave Chennaiyin a 2-0 cushion before ‘Golden Boot’ leader Roy Krishna (14 goals) pulled one back for ATK in the opening period. “The first half was enjoyable because the necessity was three points. That is what we were pushing for,” added the 53-year-old.

While lauding the efforts of his own players, Coyle was appreciative of his opponents as well, especially wing-back Prabir Das, who put in some delicious deliveries. “Prabir is an outstanding player. He is at the heart of many of ATK’s moves. When you have some wonderful attacking players, his crosses come in handy. But because we were so good in possession, we were able to dominate the game.”

Chennaiyin next travels to Mumbai for a crucial clash against Mumbai City FC on Friday. That fixture could decide which team takes the only remaining play-offs spot. When asked about that encounter, Coyle exuded confidence in his team, especially in the Indian midfielders.

“Against Mumbai City also, we won’t change. We won’t go looking for a draw. I know MCFC has to win, and for me, we have to win. That is how we will approach the game. I have loved working with my Indian players. I trust them and I believe in them. I know they are very good players. I play two Indian midfielders because it allows me to deploy the foreigners ahead. My players are a joy to work with,” he concluded.

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