Playing in a stadium packed to the brim, with the major section of the crowd rooting for the home team could be a challenging task for visiting sides.
And Jamshedpur FC will feel that heat when it travels to Kochi to face Kerala Blasters in the Indian Super League (ISL) at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Sunday.
Though JFC’s head coach Scott Cooper spoke with a bit of envy about the great support KBFC enjoys at home, he also felt that the heavy rain here could be a great leveller.
“When you play against any team that’s got fan support like the Blasters have, you have to match the work rate as an opponent...and play with your eyes wide open,” said Cooper.
“The rain does affect the game. And it probably is a disadvantage to the home team. It’s a leveller.”
But Blasters’ assistant coach Frank Dauwen brushed that away.
“Even tomorrow, when it rains, it’s not going to be a problem. Normally, before the game, we need water for the pitch so I think it’s no problem,” said Dauwen.
The Blasters began their season with a 2-1 victory over Bengaluru and though Jamshedpur managed only a goalless draw against East Bengal, Blasters’ Adrian Luna feels it could be a difficult match.
“They are going to play five in the back or in the middle so it’s going to be a difficult block to break but we are going to do it and we are going to win,” said Luna. “But we have to work really hard.”
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