Suffering back to back losses after being unbeaten in the first leg, FC Goa find themselves at a pivotal juncture as they gear up to face Kerala Blasters in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 season.

The Goan outfit, which enjoyed an impressive unbeaten streak of 12 matches, has hit a bump with consecutive losses. However, with their sights set on redemption, they aim to reignite their winning momentum as they clash with Kerala Blasters at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi.

With 28 points from 14 matches, Manolo Marquez and his boys are currently fourth in the league standings, while the Blasters are right behind them with 26 points from 15 outings.

The Gaffer Speaks

FC Goa head coach Manolo Marquez, while acknowledging the challenges, remains resolute in his belief in the team’s capabilities.

“We’ve faced a difficult situation, but now, it’s how we respond that defines us. The team understands the importance of this match and the need to return to our winning ways,” Marquez affirmed in a pre-match interview.

He emphasized the importance of staying composed under pressure. “We had a good start to the season, went unbeaten throughout the first leg which is a difficult thing to do. Now, we try to change these two defeats and win the games.

“I know Ivan (Vukomanovic, Kerala Blasters coach) well. I think he will push the players after three defeats. Expect a strong side who will push from the start.

“But we are FC Goa and it will be an equal game. I am confident that we will react in this game,” the Spaniard added, exuding confidence in his squad’s ability to deliver when it matters most.

The Task Ahead

For FC Goa, the task ahead is clear: reclaiming their dominance and reaffirming their stature as contenders in the ISL League Shield race.

With the likes of Carlos Martinez and Noah Sadaoui leading the attacking front, they possess the firepower to unlock Kerala Blasters’ defence. Tightening up defensively and maintaining possession will be key areas of focus for the Goan side. Additionally, midfield stars Carl McHugh and Brandon Fernandes will play pivotal roles in dictating the tempo of the game.

Arshdeep Singh has had a relatively solid campaign between the sticks so far for the Men in Orange, with Odei Onaindia leading the backline in front of him.

As they step onto the pitch at 7:30 pm, FC Goa will be driven by a collective desire to bounce back stronger and reignite their pursuit of glory in the ISL. A win on Sunday will take the Gaurs to third place on the points table, and maybe even second if the team gets an exceptionally good result.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here