ISL 2016: FC Pune City take on NorthEast United FC, eye maximum points from three-match home run
Pune: After bouncing back from an opening loss with an away win in Goa, FC Pune City would look to target maximum points from their next three matches at home, beginning with the game against NorthEast United FC in the Indian Super League on Wednesday.
Pune lost to Mumbai City FC 0-1 in their campaign opener at home but bounced back with a 2-1 win over FC Goa at Margao last week to collect their first points in the tournament.
The clash against NorthEast United at Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex Stadium at Balewadi will be followed by two more home matches -- against Kerala Blasters (17 October) and Chennaiyin FC (23 October).
Assistant coach Miguel said that his side would look to collect maximum points from the three home matches.
"We have three games at home and these games are very crucial for us to get nine points which will help us go ahead in the league. We start with NorthEast and we know they are in good form but we are playing at home and with the Goa win, it will increase our confidence to play well," said Miguel, who will continue to take charge of the side till chief coach Antonio Habas returns after serving a four-match suspension.
FC Pune City needed a dramatic 90th minute winner against FC Goa to collect full points from their first win. The performance was encouraging, and with marquee Mohamed Sissoko stamping his authority on debut alongside Jonatan Lucca in midfield, there was all-round appreciation.
"It was the first game they played together. They can do better but they performed really well as they understand each other," said Miguel.
NorthEast United are at the top of the table for now with six points from three matches. But they were grounded by Mumbai City FC after two consecutive wins at home and coach Nelo Vingada will have to do a lot more to ensure that his side does not remain giants only at home.
"I am proud of the players even though we made some mistakes, missed a couple of chances. But this is football, these mistakes happen because we play with men and not with robots and machines. I am leaving with this performance and not the result. I am leaving Mumbai more optimistic than I was even before we lost," the Portuguese coach said after his team lost by a solitary goal, thanks to a penalty from Diego Forlan.
NorthEast United FC had their chances to get at least a point from the game but missed far too many chances against Mumbai. If they want more than a point in their next away match, they will have make amends and convert the chances.
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