ISL 2023-24: Chennaiyin aims to grab playoffs spot, says head coach Coyle ahead of Bengaluru clash

February 5, 2024
After a two-week break, Chennaiyin FC are ready to face Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium

Chennai, Feb 5 (IANS) After a two-week break, Chennaiyin FC are ready to face Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Wednesday and head coach Owen Coyle asserted that the team’s sole focus is to qualify for the playoffs.

The Marina Machans had a comfortable 2-0 win when they faced Bengaluru FC previously in the league this season and will look to register another victory in the southern derby. They are currently sitting in ninth position in the points table with a total of 12 points.

“It’s great to come back fresh and ready to go as we move into the second half of the season. We have six games at home, four away and with a great opportunity to be in the playoffs. We aim to make sure that we move to the top six and everything’s in our own hands, we will decide our own fate. So, we are excited and looking forward to the upcoming match against Bengaluru FC,” said head coach Owen Coyle ahead of the match.

“We’ll look to pick the best team available and go to Bengaluru. We will try to do the double, having already beaten them in Chennai in the league game and we take valuable three points which would take us into the top six straight away. So whatever happens even coming out of the Bangalore game, everything’s in our own hands. Within the club we always feel that we want to be fighting out for playoffs and championships and to do that, you have to get yourself now in that top six and that’s what we have to do,” he added.

Chennaiyin are coming into the game after a break and forward Ninthoinganba Meetei stated that the players worked hard on their finishing in training during the last two weeks.

Ninthoi said, “Actually, the break was really important for us. Two weeks after the Super Cup, we worked really hard and the training went well and we followed the process of doing a lot of conditioning and finishing. The team is focused on the upcoming match against Bengaluru FC. In the matches we work really hard but miss the key opportunities, so we worked on it during the break.”

Chennaiyin and Bengaluru have contested 14 matches in the ISL so far, with the Marina Machans securing victories in four games, while Bengaluru FC emerged triumphant in seven.

Will the trend continue on Wednesday or Chennaiyin’s form prevail in this edition of the Southern Derby?

–IANS/bsk/

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