FC Goa wary of Al Wahda challenge

After earning a hard-fought draw with Al Rayyan, FC Goa will take on UAE's Al Wahda in its second AFC Champions League group stage game on Saturday.

Juan Ferrando

Juan Ferrando's FC Goa is the first Indian club to play in the AFC Champions League.   -  Special Arrangement

After a putting up a phenomenal display to earn a gritty draw with Al Rayyan, FC Goa will take on UAE's Al Wahda in its second AFC Champions League group stage game on Saturday.

A strong performance against Al Rayyan will give the Gaurs a massive boost of confidence heading into the game against Al Wahda.

RELATED| FC Goa in AFC Champions League: All you need to know

Al Wahda comes into the game on the back of a 1-0 loss to Iranian side Persepolis FC in its opening outing in the AFC Champions League and will be eager to make amends. The side is coached by former Ajax head coach Henk ten Cate, who has earlier worked with Chelsea and FC Barcelona.

- Need to improve -

Despite his side employing a watertight defensive performance against Al Rayyan, FC Goa head coach Juan Ferrando said there are areas his side needs to work on in order to progress in the competition.

“We need to improve in attack and our focus is always on the next game. We cannot think of the Al Rayyan game anymore,” he said.

“I know the coach and the attacking style of Al Wahda and they are a very dangerous team. We need to control them in many areas of the pitch to stop them and we will also try to keep the ball as much as possible,” he added.

RELATED| AFC Champions League: Debutant FC Goa holds Al Rayyan to goalless draw

When it comes to attack, FC Goa’s threat lies in the technical brilliance of Jorge Ortiz, who showed flashes of his class against Al Rayyan, and the tireless Ishan Pandita, who made his first start for the Gaurs. Glan Martins also enjoyed a brilliant game.

When it comes Al Wahda, the key man is Slovenian striker Tim Matavz, who is the club's top scorer this season with nine goals in 23 games.

Additionally, national team captain Ismail Matar leads the way for Al Wahda when it comes to most assists for the club this season, with nine to this name.

RELATED| FC Goa's draw against Al Rayyan a 'good moment for Indian football', says coach Ferrando

The Emirati club has played 12 times in the AFC Champions League, with its longest stay in the competition coming in 2007, when it reached the semifinal.

For more updates, follow Sportstar on :