Marquez: Winning start a morale booster for Hyderabad FC

Ahead of Hyderabad FC's game against Bengaluru FC on Saturday, coach Manuel Marquez believes the opening win will prove crucial only if the side sustains the winning momentum.

Hyderabad FC coach Manuel Marquez   -  ISL

Hyderabad FC head coach Manuel Marquez believes it is important to keep improving with each game and also sustain the winning momentum.

Marquez, speaking at the virtual media conference ahead of the team’s match against Bengaluru FC on Saturday, said he is very happy with the winning start as it is a huge morale-booster.

“After the first win, the boys are in a better frame of mind and ready to take on the vastly experienced and a very good Bengaluru outfit,” he said.

“Still, we have to keep playing consistently well and a quality game to register more wins,” Marquez said. “We are aware that we will be up against one of the contenders for the championship but we are also capable of winning big games,” he added.

ISL sides could not manage to squeeze in a comprehensive pre-season this time around, but Marquez is not worried about the form of the side in the few friendlies that did take place. “I don’t think the results of ‘friendlies’ before the ISL began have any bearing. I look at them as only extended training sessions,” Marquez said.

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On Aridane Santana’s match-winning goal in the first game against Odisha FC, the head coach hailed his positive disposition while also pointing out that isn't necessary he should score goals in all the games. “The kind of confidence he rubs on to the others is the key,” he said.

Marquez also insisted on the importance of avoiding unnecessary yellow cards. “You cannot afford these things especially against teams like BFC which have players who have mobility ability to recover lost ground very quickly,” he said.

Reflecting on the teams losing advantage after 2-0 leads, the HFC head coach is aware of the risks facing his side, especially given the squad strength Bengaluru boasts of.

Marquez also hinted that he might continue to prefer young Indian talent on a rotation basis even while also stressing that he cannot afford to repeat the same set of players, especially defenders, because of injury worries.