Mumbai: Former Australia mid-fielder Jay Stacy, who is the head coach of Dabang Mumbai for the upcoming season of the Hockey India League, wants his team to treat every match as final.
Stacy, who represented Australia in four Olympics, will be Mumbai's head coach for the second year in a row.
"We always play attacking hockey, that's the main way to create scoring opportunities. I am optimistic about our chances, we have obviously lost our captain from last year Matthew Swann with injury but have gained some very good international players," the Australia legend told PTI.
"I am optimistic that we can perform well but of course this is a difficult competition, six very good teams, so it comes down to the (match) day and how we prepare for each match and how we perform in each match," he added.
Last season, Mumbai had finished fifth and the coach felt that the team needed to win every match this year.
"They (all other teams) have a strong list this year. We are going to have to treat every match as final," said Stacy.
He believes that his experience of coaching the Victoria side in the Australia Premier League will come in handy while coaching Mumbai Dabang.
Asked how will his Olympic experience count, he said, "Just because I had a long playing career does not guarantee that I will be a good coach. But I have been coaching for quite some time now. Last year was my first year and I learnt a lot about Indian Hockey League (sic), so I can pass on some experience. This year I coached Victoria in the Australia Hockey League (and) we won the championship.
"I have that experience. Hopefully, I can pass on some of those structures and strategies (to the players) – what we want to do as a defensive group, as a midfield group and as a striker group and of course our set pieces. We have to make sure our set pieces are in a good rhythm and give us an opportunity but we have some good flickers, Harmanpreet (Singh), (Jeremy) Hayward," Stacy added.
He also said that his team was balanced and comprised one of the best strikers in the world – Florian Fuchs.
"We have good mid-fielders and defenders so overall (we have) balance across the field at one time and that will stand us in good stead but the other teams have also got that, so we must be disciplined," Stacy insisted.
"Our training sessions have been very solid, (a lot of) hard work."
Updated Date: Jan 17, 2017 19:05 PM