On Friday, when FC Goa was anticipating for another favorable outcome, the tables were reversed. Teams who were fighting them in the battle for the playoffs were dropping points, and some even lost from winning positions.
As a result of Odisha FC’s astonishing victory at their own stadium against Hyderabad FC, the standings in the Indian Super League (ISL) have been thrown off, and Goa now has a steep hill to climb.
According to the math, FC Goa has to get six points from their last three matches in order to finish in the top six in the standings, regardless of how the other teams perform. Two of these three matches, however, are going to be challenging for the team: the match against almost unbeatable Mumbai City, which will take place at the Nehru Stadium in Fatorda on Saturday, and the match against contenders Bengaluru FC, which will take place away from home.
The team captained by Carlos Pena must be feeling the heat, although a large part of it is due to their own mistakes. They lost points against the team in last position, Northeast United, as well as Jamshedpur FC, and then they were unable to capitalize when Odisha were forced to play for about 30 minutes with a player disadvantage due to a lack of players.
During the pre-match media engagement on Friday, Pena told TOI, “We don’t have time to dwell too much into the past.” “We don’t have time to think too much into the past,” “Of sure, we have a chance to win once again. We cannot afford to squander time dwelling on what we have misplaced in the past.
It is time to shift our attention to Saturday, which is also the next target on our list. We have three games left to play in order to complete the goals, so we are going to attempt to take what we’ve learned from the previous games and apply it to the next one.
The away team has yet to be defeated and is now just three points away from clinching their second ISL League Winners’ Shield title in the last three years. In the event that Mumbai is victorious against Goa this coming Saturday, they plan to once again celebrate their victory at Fatorda.
“Saturday is going to be a different day in their history, just as it will be in ours. We are working towards a significant goal here. Mumbai is bringing its problems and their full might to the table. It is going to turn out differently now that we are at this particular point in time. They have a really talented squad, but we are certain that we will have opportunities to win,” Pena added.
In his second season as head coach at Mumbai, Des Buckingham has done an outstanding job, elevating the club to one of the highest echelons that Indian football has ever seen. Even if the away team is not having their greatest game tonight, they still play attractive football and have the ability to break through defenses.
“When the season began, I was asked what game I was most looking forward to this season, and I said that it would have to be the trip to Goa. We stayed in Goa for a total of three months together in the previous year.
We were taken care of and welcomed with open arms. I can’t wait to go back to Fatorda and keep working on maintaining the same level of play we’ve been doing there. Buckingham was quoted as saying, “I’m anticipating a really good game.”
In the event that the hosts are unable to pull off the inconceivable and save their own faltering campaign, Goa may once again prove to be a special place for Mumbai.