Indian Super League

ISL: 'I wouldn't say it is a failure' - Des Buckingham on not retaining Mumbai City's titles

06:33 EAT 17/11/2021
Des Buckingham Mumbai City ISL 8
While stressing on continuing the good things from last season, the English coach highlighted the importance to evolve.

Mumbai City manager Des Buckingham admitted that replacing outgoing coach Sergio Lobera is bound to be a tough task, with Lobera having won the Indian Super League (ISL) League Winners' Shield and ISL Trophy last year.

The former Melbourne City assistant pointed that his immediate focus will be on the league, before starting to think about their AFC Champions League campaign.

What was said?

"Often when you come in when the club has changed a coach, it's because the results have not gone your way. It's about adding and building the success here. So for me it's not a rebuild. It's the excitement rather than the nervousness. It will be exciting now to add another chapter to this story," said Buckingham.

"The first thing that we need to focus on is the ISL that will start in the next few days. The [AFC] Champions League is a very important competition but we need to make sure that we have our focus on the league first," he added.

What to expect from Mumbai City?

"I watched all of the games last year. It was a very exciting brand of football played put in place by Sergio and his team and that's something that really strikes true with my philosophy. It's something that I'll be trying to not change but add to playing in a very similar way," the Brit continued.

"When there is a way of doing things the way the team did last year, teams can know what to expect from you. So it's important that we evolve and add to that."

Can Mumbai City defend their titles?

"I think it's exciting. You want to be the first to do something. Sergio was the first to lead the club to both the titles last year. So we are trying to be the first to try and defend at least one if not both the trophies. No pressure, honestly. We are very clear on what we want to do and now it's just about the players expressing themselves when we start the season," the Mumbai City tactician remarked.

Asked if it will be a failure if the Islanders fail to defend either of their trophies, Buckhingham responded, "I'm not going to give you a 'yes' or 'no'. I wouldn't say personally that it will be a failure. As a playing group, as a staff group and as a club, we are striving towards retaining both of those trophies and it's about the way we do that on the field."