NEVER SAY DIE -THE REWIND
In what was a must-win game, Kibu Vicuna and his team have overthrown a well-drilled and settled Jamshedpur side by fighting with a man down. Let us analyze some key points of the game.
Gary Hooper was back in the starting eleven alongside the in-form Jordan Murray in a 4-4-1-1 formation. The midfield pairing of Jeakson and Vicente Gomez was supported by Facundo Pereyra and Sahal in the wide positions. Lalruatthara and Jessel were the Full Backs with Costa and Sandeep pairing in front of Albino, who was in goal.
On the Ball
In the build-up, Jeakson would drop in between the Centre Backs creating a three-man backline with Vicente Gomez in front. The 2 full backs would stay wide in line with the midfielder offering passing options. This allowed the front 4 of Jordan Murray, Gary Hooper, Sahal, and Facundo to operate with freedom. Murray stayed upfront while Hooper, Sahal, and Facundo interchanged positions and played between the lines. This twisted the Jamshedpur backline as it was getting hard to spot who was playing where. It wasn’t a mere coincidence that we had 2 clear cut chances before the first drinks break. Jordan Murray being in the right place at the right time is highly credited to the three ‘10s’ behind him. The space created by Facundo and Hooper around the box allowed Murray to surpass the opposition defense with ease.
Off the Ball
Jamshedpur likes to build mainly through Monroy, who moves it to the wing and then find Valskis in the box. Valskis is also the kind of striker who drops deep to link the play as well. To stop Jamshedpur from scoring, we had to stop the service to Valskis. During the build up of JFC, we would take out the CDM (Monroy) and would allow them to take the ball to the wing early. This gave KBFC enough time to overload the wings and win the possession back. Even during our passage with possession, Lalruatthara was asked to stay cautious to handle the threat of Jackichand Singh in the flank. The substitutions by Kibu was also to the point. Bringing on Rahul and Rohit brought solidity and an attacking threat.
To conclude, Kibu got his game plan spot on. Though we were reduced to 10 men, we never gave up. We could see each and every player constantly contesting for balls even in the last minutes of the game. Yes, there were some flaws in defense, but those are fixable. We strongly believe that this match would be a turning point for the team. Beating a team who is above us in the table with 10 men will be a huge confidence boost for the side. Let this Never say die spirit always be there.