After a string of five wins, Hyderabad FC, the defending champion, suffered two back-to-back losses, and that has, perhaps, put the defending champion in a defensive mode.
Despite being in the second position in the ISL table, Hyderabad has certainly not been at its sparkling best in terms of the overall display.
Chennaiyin FC, too, has been largely unimpressive having had a roller-coaster ride in the season so far. Lying seventh on the table, the former champion has flattered only to deceive.
When the teams clash in the Indian Super League here on Saturday, it would be interesting to see how Hyderabad, known for using its wings and possessing a strong defence (it has conceded just five goals) and Chennaiyin, known for its strong attacking line, play.
Speaking at a press conference here on Friday, Chennaiyin’s head coach Thomas Brdaric said his team has been training hard and would bounce back after the loss to Odisha FC in the previous contest.
“We have to deny [them goals]. Players must understand that each one has a responsibility on the field. It’s a pity that in the last game against Odisha FC we made a chain of mistakes,” he said.
On Hyderabad, Brdaric said: “It’s an experienced team and a good coach (Manolo Marquez), who has brought success to the team. They are struggling, we recognize it but we can’t underestimate them.”
Hyderabad’s head coach Marquez said: “They (Chennaiyin) are sometimes unpredictable but I like the team. They are a brave team, who play to win.”
Marquez predicted it will be a tough game. “We have very clever players, who have a lot of experience in this league. We have trained quite well and are ready for what will be a difficult game for both sides.”