Head coach Thomas Brdaric urged his players to put their best foot forward when Chennaiyin FC face Hyderabad FC challenge in an away fixture of the Hero Indian Super League 2022-23 at the GMC Balayogi Athletic Stadium here on Thursday. "To play against Hyderabad is a good challenge to see where we stand. They are a very experienced side. In the last half year, we have worked very hard to be competitive against these teams and we want to compete with them tomorrow. We will go all out," Brdaric commented during a pre-match press conference conducted on Wednesday.
Hyderabad are currently placed second on the points table whereas Chennaiyin are seventh with 15 points. A win against Hyderabad will help Marina Machans to close in on the final playoff spot as they are just four points behind the sixth-positioned FC Goa.
Chennaiyin and Hyderabad are not far from each other when it comes to scoring goals as they have struck 23 and 27 goals respectively so far in the on-going season.
"It's very interesting league. All 11 teams can beat each other, so we have to analyse all teams very well and give players confidence to go into the game. We are focussed for the next match (against Hyderabad). It's a tough match but the team will be prepared," the head coach added.
Brdaric's men put up an impressive performance in their last game against Jamshedpur as they fought back from two goals down to take home a point with a draw.
Goalkeeper Samik Mitra pulled off two saves for Chennaiyin in that match, taking his overall tally to eight saves in two games this season.
"It feels really nice to be in the team and playing. Coach and everyone gave me confidence. It's always a proud moment to play for Chennaiyin. It's my job to make saves and that's what I do for the team. I would like to contribute in the same way," the 22-year-old West Bengal-born goalkeeper, Mitra said.
Both the teams share a close head-to-head record as they have won thrice each in their seven previous meetings with the remaining one resulting in a draw.