Thu. Oct 22nd, 2020

ISL 2019-20: Josep Gombau – Aridane Santana is a special player

3 min read

The Odisha FC boss praised the Spanish striker who scored a brace against Jamshedpur…

Odisha FC kicked off their Indian Super League (ISL) journey at the Kalinga Stadium with a 2-1 win over Jamshedpur FC in what was a closely-fought contest.

Coach Josep Gombau was pleased with his team’s effort and he mentioned that the game could have gone either way as both teams fought for the three points.

“It was a very good feeling to finally play at home. We are grateful to the people who came out and helped us win our first game at the Kalinga Stadium,” he said.

“It was difficult to play because it’s the first game here and the pitch was not in the best condition. A lot of times you could see that the grass was a bit long. I think that we played a good game in these difficult situations. It was an equal game. We have these quality players up front. Aridane’s second goal was very good.

“The second half was very open with a lot of transitions from one side to the other. We are happy with the result.”

Aridane Santana was the difference between the two sides on the night. The Spaniard netted a brace to take his season tally to six goals. Gombau praised his qualities and also spoke about how he is helping the youngsters in the side.

“It’s true that Aridane has already scored six goals. Also, Xisco (Hernandez) has scored four. We know that Aridane is important. He brings fear (in the minds of the opponents), it is his quality. I think he is a player who not only scores goals but also makes the team play better as he is very involved in the play and comes back to receive the ball,” the Spanish gaffer explained.

“He’s very good in the air and he is our target-man. We are very happy with him. He is a humble person and helps all the young players in our team. (Seiminmang) Manchong is a young player, I am very happy to see had 25-30 minutes to play today.”

Odisha have ten days until they return to action when they host Chennaiyin FC. The coach believes that home games are must-wins and his side must make the best of the fact that they will be playing the majority of the remaining games in front of the home crowd.

“We play on the sixth (of  January). We have ten days until the next game. The objective is to recover some players. Diawandou (Diagne) and Jerry (Mawihmingthanga) are important players who went off last game due to injuries. We have time to prepare against Chennaiyin FC.

“They are playing very well in the last few games. We need to work hard and try to win because playing at home, we need to be stronger. We have eight games left, out of which five are at home. We will try to get the points and see where we are at the end of the season,” he concluded.

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