Mahindra United all set for Asian Football Confederation Cup
National Football League (NFL) champions Mahindra United are determined to record a win in their opening Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup Group-E match against Singapore Armed Forces Football Club at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium, Singapore, on Tuesday.
Mahindras coach speaking to Hindustan Times from Singapore said, "A draw is not a bad option but we are not entering the match with the sole purpose to walk away with one point. All our energies will be to win and walk away with three points."
"We don't know the style of play or the strategy of the opposition, but the players, all fighting fit, are fired up," said Pereira.
"All I know is that they have naturalised English player, who has scored consistently and helped them to win the Singapore championship. They also have in three other naturalised players from Britain, Japan and Thailand."
However, Pereira seemed unconcerned about the big guns in the rival camp. "I'm not confident that our defender Mahesh Gawli, N S Manju, N P Pradeep and Surkumar Singh will combine effectively to blunt their attacks," Pereira said, adding, "goalkeeper Sandip Nandy is also in great form and has the ability to deny the best of strikers."
Pereira banks heavily on midfielders James Singh, Sushant Mathews, K Ajayan and Mohd. Rafi to take control of the midfield. He hopes they create sufficient chances for Ghanaian strikers, captain Yusif Yakubu and Andrews Pomeyie Mensah to have a crack at the Armed Forces goal.
Singapore Armed Forces coach Richard Bok, who too does not have much knowledge of the Indian champs, promises to give Mahindas a tough time. "We know little about the Indian team but I believe they play aggressive and fast. We better watch out," said a cautious Bok.