In a virtual press conference, Márquez, Ogbeche and Konsham spoke about the goals and plans heading into the new ISL season.
Hyderabad FC coach Manolo Márquez hopes that his side do better and continue the dominating brand of football they played last season as he hopes to take the Nizams to the finals.
In a virtual press conference, Márquez spoke about the club’s pre-season preparations, life in bio-bubbles, and also gave a little bit of insight into the team’s make-up ahead of their first game on November 23 against Chennaiyin FC.
Discussing the prep-season preparations amidst the bio-bubbles, Márquez stated:
“We had a good two months’ of preparations. We wanted to arrive with a full squad and in good shape ahead of our first game against Chennaiyin FC (on Nov 23). The team has a very strong pool of domestic players. We had a very good season last time and missed the top 4 finish narrowly. We want to continue the same style of player and improve on it and hope to finish among the top 4 after the league stage.
“Pre-season is always difficult for all teams because of the Covid situation in the country. After season seven, the situation was bad, so we had to change our plans. We trained in Hyderabad before moving to Goa and we are back in the bubble.”
Given Hyderabad’s young Indian contingent, Márquez also spoke about the importance of mental strengthen in the game:
“Mentality is very important. See the mentality of Sunil Chhetri, who is a clear champion. He forgets his previous action and focuses on the next immediately. Football is a game of mistakes. You will have bad days or a bad season. But the thing is you have to forget it and continue improving and focus on the next move. So the youngsters have to be mentally strong to be successful.”
Márquez singled out young Rohit Danu, speaking about the 19 year old’s talent and skill:
“Rohit Danu will be one of the most important players for us. He is just 19 and a very smart player.”
Also present during the virtual conference was Hyderabad’s new signing and last year’s ISL winner, Bartholomew Ogbeche.
The Nigerian spoke about playing with the youngsters and the pressure that it adds on him:
“I see ISL getting better every season and I am excited to be part of it. We have a very young squad. Consistency is the key here for the youngsters. That could be the flow in youngsters’ game. It is a lot of pressure for me for sure. But I have to think about the good things I did last season and perform here. It is a new challenge for me to play in a new environment. There are a lot of expectations. With more youngsters, I have to take more responsibility. And I am ready for the challenge.”
Along with Ogbeche, Indian defender Chinglensana Konsham was also present.
Konsham spoke about his vision for the upcoming season:
“The majority of the squad has been retained. We have the same coach. We know the system and the style of play. That’s the good part. With new players coming in, it is all about getting into the first game stepping up our game. I am excited for the season ahead.
“Last season was very good. We played a good brand of game. It is about getting the results this season and making it to the playoffs.”