We have to fight as a team to beat East Bengal, says Raikhan

IMPHAL: preparing to fight heavyweights East bengal in their second home game of 2019-20 I-League season with a young and inexperienced team, NEROCA FC coach Raikhan Gift He hopes his boys will play as a team to challenge the Kolkata giants by three points on Tuesday.

Asked about their preparation for the game, Raikhan said, "I have a young squad, without much experience of the top level game. I am preparing them mentally to think that in a game every player is on same level. You have to fight as a team against a team on the field. It's 11 against 11. Respect your opponent but don't fear them. If you can fight with your 100% then anything is possible. East bengal are a very good team, they have big names in the squad under a very good coach. We have to improve a lot in every area but we are ready to play for three points."

Asked if it will be an advantage to them that East bengal arrived here on Monday afternoon, without much time for proper rest before the match, he said, "I don't think so, they are professional players of very high standard, so they know how to handle that. I am asking my boys to learn from this. We have to do (travel) like this later, without much time between games, so we have to be mentally prepared for this type of situation."

East bengal coach Alejandro Menéndez He also hoped to get three points from the game. I would be a worried man if my team does not create the opportunities, but creating the opportunities in both games is a sign that the team combination is working well. We would have liked to have scored more, but still managed to score in each game. Therefore, we are closer to scoring more goals and it is a positive sign, Menendez said.

Asked about their opponents, the coach added, "I don't like talking much about our rivals. We know how they play and their style is pretty similar to that of Real Kashmir. So, we know what we are up against. We have to play according to our style and be confident about what we do. Our defenders are playing really well and we need to have confidence in our team. We are all set for the game tomorrow."