Indian Super League

Ivan Vukomanovic: Kerala Blasters showed their defensive quality against Bengaluru FC

6:15 PM GMT 28/11/2021
Ivan Vukomanovic Kerala Blasters
The Serbian coach suggested that Kerala Blasters will adjust tactics every game

Kerala Blasters shared spoils with Bengaluru FC after a 1-1 draw in the ISL 2021-22 contest at the Athletic Stadium in Bambolim on Sunday.

Bengaluru FC defender Ashique Kuruniyan (84') opened the scoring for his side but his mistimed clearance in the 88th minute handed over an equalizer to Kerala Blasters. 

Kerala Blasters head coach Ivan Vukomanovic was impressed with the defensive prowess shown by his team as they disallowed an attacking Bengaluru FC any clear sight of the goal. 

What was said? 

"If you sum up (the three matches), we had to start against strong teams. We are in a phase where we are developing different styles of play. High-pressing, defensive and all this. Let's say that in all three games we performed well and all the boys have shown high-quality commitment. Tonight (Sunday) it was an interesting game. We wanted to be well-organized and compact, seeing also the fact that we played a game three days before. I'm glad that today we showed defensive qualities," Vukomanovic said after the game. 

"From the beginning, we want to perform. We want to play attacking football and also the defensive block. As a coach, you've to train in every aspect. So that you can become unpredictable in the future for the opponents," the Serbian added.

The Serbian also believes that both the teams were unlucky in their own ways and is happy with the improvement shown by his team as a unit. 

"I think both goals for both sides were lucky and unlucky. I think the first goal that we conceded wasn't even a goal. The other goal also, these kinds of things happen. We have to stay positive despite these kinds of things and build up through the competition," Vukomanovic said. 

"We are happy with the improvement in all players. Since August, there has been a huge improvement in every aspect. Luna has the quality to be better and be better. I think the foreigners are bringing something that we need," he added. 

'Ashique Kuruniyan had his best game so far in ISL 2021-22' 

Bengaluru FC head coach Marco Pezzaiuoli, meanwhile, backed Kuruniyan after his defensive flaws and mentioned that he had his best game in the league this season against Kerala Blasters. 

"I think Ashique (Kuruniyan) did well. It was a good goal for him. He needs to improve his crosses but I think he played the best game (this season)," Pezzaiuoli said. 

The German, however, was disappointed with the team for not making the most of their attacking chances against Kerala Blasters who gave a good account of their defensive ability. 

"We are disappointed because we scored a goal in the 87th minute. We had a chance for Cleiton (Silva) to score as well. We dominated the game but we didn't create so many chances - that was a big issue. But it's always difficult to play against opponents who stay deep, close is much easier. We need to be very patient," the German said. 

"Our attacking is important. First-half we passed through the defensive line but we didn't get the ball inside. We took too long to make the last pass. We tried to dribble and cut backwards," he added.