Sreenidi Deccan will have a golden opportunity to return to the top of the table when they host Churchill Brothers in their I-League match at the Deccan Arena on Saturday, February 4 with the kickoff slated for 2pm. RoundGlass Punjab’s highscoring draw against Mumbai Kenkre FC has opened the door for the Deccan Warriors to stake their claim for the title.
A win against Churchill Brothers would see them move above Punjab on the league table — albeit having played a game more than Punjab, who, for their part, have a tough round of fixtures to play at home now.
At the pre-match press conference, Sreenidi Deccan fullback Shahabaaz clearly stated what the team management was thinking heading into the home stretch for the title race. “Our main focus at the moment is to play better, concede no goals and win all our games.”
Sreenidi Deccan go into this after a topsy turvy game against NEROCA FC — which was eerily identical to their game against Churchill Brothers in Goa. In both cases, Sreenidi streaked into a three goal lead, conceded two quick goals, and then desperately held on to take the points.
After the game against NEROCA, Sreenidi Deccan assistant coach Birendra Thapa admitted that a lack of focus played its part in the performance. “We start the game well but now we need to be focused till the final whistle.”
Shahabaaz added to his coach’s comments, “In the second half we got a little defensive and kept losing the ball. We need to keep the ball better and hope to do better in the next game.”
When Sreenidi Deccan last played Churchill Brothers, the Goan outfit were struggling. Now, though, things have changed. The Red Machines are unbeaten in four games and will look to extend it late in the season.
Thapa was quick to acknowledge their quality and cautioned against complacency. “Churchill Brothers are a good side, they have good players in the attack. It’s a different Churchill Brothers now and they are playing well. We will go all out for the three points tomorrow.”
Churchill Brothers assistant coach Mateus Costa was wary of the quality Srennidi possess and also commended them for getting results even if performances were not always up to expectations. “Sreenidi Deccan are playing great football and the most important thing is that they are winning games.”
Dismissing the result from last time, Costa added “Last game was a different day and tomorrow will be a different day. It’s their home so we expect a tough game. They want to go up on the table and so do we. We have worked hard to reach fifth on the table, if you look at how we started, it’s been an inspiring journey. We will go for the three points tomorrow.”
The match between Sreenidi Deccan and Churchill Brothers will be broadcast live on Eurosport and Doordarshan Sports and streamed live on the Discovery Plus OTT platform at 2pm IST.