‘Proud of the team for many reasons’ – Chennaiyin FC coach Csaba Laszlo proud despite failing to make top four |

The Romanian-Hungarian coach foresees a brighter season for Chennaiyin next season…

Chennaiyin FC are all set to play their final game of the 2020-21 Indian Super League (ISL) campaign on Sunday against Kerala Blasters. 

With 19 points from 19 games, the Marina Machans are currently eighth on the table and are out of the reckoning for a play-off spot, just like their opponents on Sunday.

It has been a disappointing season for them and in the 3-3 result against NorthEast United on Thursday, Chennaiyin picked their 10th draw of the season – an ISL record. Head coach Csaba Laszlo went on to assert that his team have been unlucky as they had been outplayed only in the 4-1 defeat against Hyderabad FC this season.

“I think in the full season, we didn’t have much luck. But I’m still proud of the team for many reasons. The first is, the team showed character and we were at the same level in every single game. It did not matter who our opponent was. I think now for the 20,000th time I say that it was only in the Hyderabad game, especially in the second half, that we were not fantastic. We conceded goals that we could have avoided. 

“We targeted to be in the top four and until the last game against Goa (2-2 draw). If we had won, mathematically we would have had the possibility to be in the top four. But also against NorthEast United (on account of late goals), we lost crucial points,” he rued.

Chennaiyin haven’t won any of their last eight games and Laszlo was left to lament on his side’s finishing capabilities, of which much has been spoken about. He hopes to finish with a win. 

“We want to show our fans, our club owners and everyone around us that we are still together and that we want to win this game. Hopefully, the football god will also be with us. We won the first game against Jamshedpur and hopefully we [will] win our last game against Kerala. After that, we will see in which position we finish. To close the season with a victory over Kerala, I think it will somehow be sweet. The sourness is there because we don’t reach fourth place,” the Chennaiyin coach admitted.

Edwin Vanspaul, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Chennaiyin vs NorthEast United

The 57-year-old likened losing Rafael Crivellaro and Anirudh Thapa to injuries through the course of the season as driving a car without efficient fuel.

“The injuries to Thapa and Rafa – two important players – it’s like driving to be in the competition, for some time the engine is working but you don’t get the fuel. After you refuel with reserves, you try and it was to be seen in our game,” Laszlo explained how Chennaiyin lacked the creativity in midfield in the absence of the two key midfielders.

Laszlo, who is on a one-year-contract at Chennaiyin, hinted that he might be open to continuing his stay with the Marina Machans.

“We have to reload our energy and unit for the next season, to learn from our mistakes we made this season. I wish to have stadiums full of fans in the next season, especially with our fans at our home for the players to feel how fantastic the Chennaiyin club is. Also to show more goals and more victories, but don’t forget that if you look at the sky, there are a lot of clouds.

“Behind the clouds, there is always sunshine. So believe that next season there will be a lot of sunshine and early sunshine over Chennaiyin FC,” he signed out.


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