Free Press Journal

I cannot cry over missing players: Habas


Antonio Lopez Habas

Kolkata: Defending champions Atletico de Kolkata may miss several of their key players in their Indian Super League football match against Kerala Blasters FC tomorrow but coach Antonio Habas said he cannot cry for that and will rather think of putting a collective effort. “I don’t want to give any excuse. I’ve absolute confidence on our team. Injuries are part and parcel of any game, while it’s a proud moment for the players if they represent the country at national level,” Habas said about the national team players of his side who are currently in Oman for India’s World Cup qualifying round match.

“I cannot cry (over non-availability of players). The competition will go on. I’ve to put my best XI,” he said at the pre-match press conference. While their marquee player Helder Postiga is ruled out for three to four weeks, Arnab Mondal and Rino Anto are on national duty. Central back Josemi is also down with a niggle and Habas said their captain Borja Fernandez will have a big responsibility tomorrow.

“Borja is an important player. He’s the captain of the team. Every player has specific responsibility. For me, it’s about collective effort,” said Habas. The All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) disciplinary committee has warned and fined Habas for engaging in public criticism of match officials after their 1-1 draw in Goa October 7.

“I don’t want to talk about the refereeing. I cannot do anything. Maybe I’m a bit hot but now I’ve become very very calm. I don’t want to express my opinion anymore,” he said