Lobera hails his side’s ability to ‘suffer and win’

ISL Media Team

FC Goa returned to winning ways after three games and climbed back into the top four of Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2017-18 thanks to a 2-1 win over Jamshedpur FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa on Thursday. Manuel Lanzarote scored both the goals for the Gaurs on either side of a Trindade Goncalves equaliser for Jamshedpur.

Jamshedpur started the match positively but it was Goa who took the lead somewhat against the run of play. The Gaurs’ head coach Sergio Lobera though insisted that his team were deserving winners on the night. “There were games where we were better but weren’t able to win. In today’s game we suffered quite a bit but a team needs to know how to win. Today the team learnt to suffer and how to play against a team that was hard to play against,” he told reporters at the post-match press conference.

While expanding on if he thought his side were lucky to have a first-half lead despite Lanzarote taking the penalty for their opening goal twice, Lobera added: “I think we haven’t had a great amount of luck in the league. I think we deserve more than what we got so far. For me it was not luck. Moreover, we had to take the penalty twice.”

Jamshedpur put on a valiant display and even breached Goa’s defence in the second half, prompting Lobera to admit that his side must improve defensively. “I wouldn’t complain much about the chances that we didn’t take but I would complain about the goal we conceded. We have to aim to keep a clean sheet and we haven’t achieved it as yet. We have been conceding goals from crosses and today the same thing happened. We spoke about this before the game, we have to improve defensively.“

When asked if he was surprised by Jamshedpur’s attacking approach to the encounter, Lobera said: “Not really. The last game they played in a similar manner. I’m pleased with the fact that we scored two goals against a team that has kept five clean sheets and only lost two games. It’s not easy.”

The match was also marred with an altercation between both set of players at half-time but Lobera was keen to play down the incident. “Ultimately, what happens on the pitch should stay on the pitch. This is a league where the players know each other quite well. It’s a very sporting league as well. It moved to a point where things just boiled over,” the Spaniard said.

The 40-year-old concluded the media interaction by defending his midfield general Ahmed Jahouh who was booked for persistent fouling. “Jahouh is a player who’s got a yellow card before. I‘ve coached him before. I know he’s a player who can handle a yellow card. He took it up to the limit but he knew where the boundaries were,” Lobera said.

image/ISL

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