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Hope ISL becomes a nine-month affair next season: Delhi coach

IANS | Kolkata |


Delhi Dynamos coach Miguel Angel Portugal on Sunday hoped the Indian Super League (ISL) expands further and become a nine-month affair from next season.

“Now the league is better. More team which means it will be more competitive. It’s growing every year which is good for the country. I hope next season the duration of the league increases to nine months,” he said.

Miguel dismissed suggestions that star signing Kalu Uche would not be available for their opener against FC Pune City November 22.

The Nigerian picked up a knock last week and has been rested by the Dynamos to recover for their game next week.

“There was a little injury but he is fine and will be available for first match. He had a groin injury,” he said at the ISL Media Day event here.

Indian players are pretty good, according to the Dynamos coach.

Asked about his thoughts on the first match against Pune City FC, he said, “I know their team. I know Lucca who played in Atletico Paranaense with me. Marcelinho is a former Delhi Dynamos player. (Ranko) Popovic plays his team in a 4-3-3 formation. I want a winning mentality in my team.”

When asked about the infrastructure in India, the coach said the difference is in organisation.

And about the team’s strategy, Miguel said, “I like possession but the reason is for better finishing for goals. We don’t want possession for our enjoyment. It depends on the opponent as well. If you have possession you can control the game. It’s very important.

“But the most important is to score goals. In football you cannot stick to one tactics. I compete for winning. Ball possession is important for winning not for enjoyment.”

The former Real Madrid ‘B’ team coach mentioned that he tried to lure Javi Lara to join his side but the Spaniard, who played for ATK last season, wasn’t keen to return to India.

“I know all the players who played here last season. Lara is in Cordoba. He didn’t want to come. I wanted Spanish players because they understand my philosophy.”