Lalitpur City FC ‘s start to the National Super League did not go the way they wanted as they went down to Kathmandu Rayzrs F C by a solitary goal in the opener held at Dasharath stadium in Kathmandu.
They play FC Chitwan in the second match Monday to keep their hopes alive in the competition. It is obvious that they cannot afford another defeat.
Head coach Pradip Humagain is aware of his team’s situation.I know it is weighing on his mind.He has to find a way to turn things around. Coach Humagain needs to employ a no nonsense approach and develop a strategy to address
He has to keep players motivated and help them overcome the defeat constructively.He will agree that the offense lacked sharpness, coordination and good finish.That is something to keep an eye on.
International Anjan Bista in the role of an attacking midfielder worked tirelessly.However, the others failed to provide him with the support he needed in midfield.
Upcoming midfielders Arik Bista and Shishir Lekhi and talented striker Binod Gurung must put their skills and abilities to good use.
We saw patches of brilliance from foreign recruits Ajerbaijani Nurlam Novruzov and Croatian Vilim Posinkovic.They will have to step up their game to make an impact.
The defense in the hands of Mikchen Tamang and Kamal Shrestha must perform consistently and show more confidence, pace and agility.
Overall they have to put up an improved performance to avoid another upset. On the other hand, FC Chitwan playing their first match are no pushover by any means. They have a highly experienced and tactically sound head coach in Meghraj KC who is capable of stirring the team to victory.
Whether he is able to make the players play for him or not is yet to be seen. He has a talent packed side with marquee player and striker of the national team Bharat Khawas leading the charge.
On paper the offense consisting of Bharat Khawas, Rajiv Lopchan, French- Serbian Goran Jerkovic and Egyptian Ahmed M Gaballa looks impressive and menacing .
Their effectiveness will largely depend on their combination, individual brilliance,understanding and ability to cash in on scoring chances. Veteran Tek Budhathoki ,international Manish Thapa alongside Egyptian El Sayed Shaaban contribution in midfield will be crucial in the team’s performance and success ultimately.
They must play intelligent,consistent football and apply extra effort to dominate midfield play and solidify both offense and defense.
The defensive responsibilities rest on three experienced capped trio of Bikash Khawas, Bikash Tamang and Amit Tamang.
As they are the backbone of the team, there is no room for error performance wise. They have to come up with a solid performance be it tackling or intercepting or defending aerial balls/ corners/ set pieces or reading the situation or man - to-man marking or body use.
Lalitpur City FC goes into the match with a slight edge over FC Chitwan,however, the latter does have the potential to turn the tables on the opponents.
By Sushil Thapa. Fairfax , VA
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