Bagan coach Antonio Habas was denied a win in the first leg by a late Idrissa Sylla header, a result that mounted pressure on Bagan, who haven’t been at their best off late.
The Kolkata team has had a solid defence throughout the season, having conceded just 15 in the league stage. But the team has conceded 5 goals in the last 3 games which cost them the Hero ISL League Winners Shield as well as an advantage in the first leg.
Habas though looked relaxed ahead of the second-leg. “There is no pressure,” he said. “It’s all about a big opportunity and this opportunity wouldn’t come again. We have to enjoy now. We have to give our best and enjoy the semi-finals.”
When asked about his approach against Khalid Jamil’s side, who are unbeaten in the last 10 games, a composed Habas replied he had instructed his players to stay calm.
Bagan will bank on David Williams and Roy Krishna on Tuesday as the duo has never failed to contribute with goals at this stage.
For NorthEast, who are unbeaten under Jamil, it will be their first-ever final, provided they beat MB.
“We have to focus on getting the result as it is a do-or-die game,” stated Jamil. “There is always pressure. I have told the boys to enjoy this pressure. Both teams have to fight for a result because of no away goals, so it is the same for our opponent as well.”
“We will have to create more scoring opportunities and put them under pressure. One team will have to outscore the other in this one as a draw will create the added load of 30 minutes,” he said.
(NOTE: We seek your support—At a time when the news is under threat, we have opted for a different approach with hopes of your support. The purpose of launching newsabode.com is primarily aimed at ensuring the survival of true independent Journalism. We bring news to you from across the world. To support truly independent journalism, please consider making a contribution to newsabode.com or taking a subscription)
We provide a link to another option to back up the initiative —https://mail.google.com/mail/u/