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Kerala Blasters v Jamshedpur

ISL play-offs: 'Jamshedpur are favourites' - Kerala Blasters' Ivan Vukomanovic despite leading first leg

4:06 PM GMT+4 14/03/2022
Ivan Vukomanovic Kerala Blasters ISL 2021-22
The 44-year-old has labelled Kerala Blasters as underdogs going into the second leg of the play-offs

Ivan Vukomanovic insists not to count Kerala Blasters' 1-0 win over Jamshedpur as the two teams face each other in the second leg of the first semi-final of the 2021-22 Indian Super League (ISL) season on Tuesday.

The Yellow Army are chasing their third final appearance while it will be a first for Owen Coyle's men should the Red Miners overturn the aggregate scoreline in their favour.

What was said?

"It (1-0 first leg win) doesn't give us any guarantee, no security for tomorrow's game," voiced Vukomanovic. "Tomorrow's game is a new game. It's a new day. We have to play with full concentration and focus on all the things that we want to achieve and show on the pitch," he continued.

"Tomorrow we are starting our game 0-0, like playing finals, actually every game since we started this competition, it was like that because we don't expect anybody to help us. We have to enter the fight, it will be a physical fight, it will be even harder and more difficult than the last one."

Fighting as underdogs

The Blasters coach had something to say in response to Jamshedpur coach Owen Coyle's statement that the southerners were 'celebrating like they have won the World Cup' after winning the first leg tie.

"Seeing our spot in the playoffs, we are the underdogs. We are not the favourites. And, of course, seeing the fact that we have won against the team who had seven victories in the row and then won the league, for us, it is a good achievement. We celebrate every game, every victory, because we know that nothing we achieve was offered to us, nothing was given to us just like that, we had to fight for them.

"And of course, when you fight for those things and you achieve victories, I think you have to celebrate. So even tomorrow we know that our opponents are the favourites. We’ll try to play a solid game, try to be a tough opponent," Vukomanovic opined.