John Gregory: 'We should have won at half-time'

A visibly disappointed John Gregory admitted his team couldn’t afford to lose games like this after Chennaiyin played out a goalless draw against Kerala.

John Gregory: "An empty goal is staring at you and you miss. It hurts me more than it hurts some of my players."   -  Sportzpics

Chennaiyin FC's season has been disastrous so far and the draw against Kerala Blasters on Thursday did nothing to soften the blow. Halfway through the Indian Super League season, Chennaiyin lies eighth on the table with five points from nine games.

A visibly disappointed John Gregory admitted his team couldn’t afford to lose games like this.

“I’m pleased from a defensive point of view but you’ve got to win these games especially when you dominate for such a long period and get golden chances to score.

"I sometimes look at my boys and think if they understand how important it is when you’re given an opportunity to score. An empty goal is staring at you and you miss. It hurts me more than it hurts some of my players.

READ: Chennaiyin FC, Kerala Blasters play out goalless draw

"We should have finished the game off at half-time,” he said.  

The Chennaiyin FC coach said that confidence has been hard to come by for his players lately.

“When you go on a poor run of games like this, your confidence comes down a little bit. We’ve been careful to try and pacify the players and give them confidence. They have been playing well in most of the games.

“Then again you can’t give them confidence like you’d give them Gatorade. They have to find it themselves as well,” he said.  

Kerala boss David James however felt his side could have closed off the game in the second half.

“Second half we put ourselves in a position where we could have won the game. We should have won, in fact. We were the stronger side towards the end,” he said.

A draw doesn’t do much good to the Blasters’ position either. It has gone on a winless run since its first game against ATK and lies just one place above Chennaiyin in the table with eight points.

“I’m a bit ambivalent towards the result.

“We’ve lost three games in a row and we didn’t want this to be our fourth. That’s good but obviously we needed a win as well,” said James.