ISL 2023-24: Important to keep the good momentum going, asserts Rahim Ali ahead of Mumbai City FC clash

Chennai, Feb 22 – Chennaiyin FC forward Rahim Ali is oozing confidence after a win at home in their last game and stated that the team will now focus on keeping the momentum going as they take on Mumbai City FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 match at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here on Friday.

The Marina Machans had a comfortable 1-0 win against Kerala Blasters FC in their last outing and will look to register a win against Mumbai City FC as well. They are currently ninth in the points table with a total of 15 points.

“It was very important that we got a win and three points in the last match. Now, we need to get the momentum going and build some confidence. Tomorrow’s match will be a tough one for us and Mumbai City also. So we are ready for that,” commented Rahim in the press conference ahead of the match.

Ali also relishes the chance as the forward of the team this season and wants to keep getting better to give his best on the field.

He stated, “The coach has given me a lot of confidence because I played as a No.9 before and I have been playing in the same position this season as well. As a number 9, you have to play as simple as you can and the coach has also mentioned the same. You get a lot of chances as a winger but when you play as a number 9, you don’t get many opportunities to turn because there is always a man behind you. So, if I have to play simple football, then it’s easy for me.”

Rahim was joined by assistant coach Sandy Stewart, who focused on the need to be clinical in front of goal to win the upcoming match against Mumbai City FC.

Stewart said, “In this season, we have been the best when we have been an aggressive team. We like to let the opposition invade the play and then put pressure on them. Our opponent for the next match is very good at keeping the ball and they do knock it out at the back, so it’s a battle of both. But we like to be aggressive, especially playing at home, we like to be aggressive. If we can win our individual battles and try and impose ourselves, we can create chances as we did previously. We just have to be more clinical then I’m sure we’ll give them a very good game.”

Chennaiyin FC and Mumbai City FC have contested 19 matches in the ISL, with the Marina Machans securing victories in six games, while the Islanders emerged triumphant in 10. Three contests have ended in a tie.

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