Coach Derrick Pereira says FC is proud of the professionalism shown by Goa’s players in difficult circumstances.

FC Goa snatched their chance to advance to the top half of the table on Friday night when the Gours were held to a 1-1 draw by Northeast United.

Derrick Pereira saw his men dominate for most of the game against Northeast United on Friday night and yet he fell short of his second consecutive win. The former Indian international, who was called in to take the reins on a short notice after the departure of Juan Ferrando in December, has seen his start in office interrupted by a number of difficult circumstances.

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“It’s difficult to be a professional in these circumstances,” Pereira said after the game in an interview. “This is a challenging phase of my career as head coach.

“I am disappointed with yesterday’s result, but I am very happy with the efforts of our players. I am proud of the professionalism they have shown in such difficult circumstances.

“We learned that two of our players tested positive after our final training session, which meant they were different with their roommates. And before leaving the hotel for the game, Edu Bedia and Evan Gonzalez were left out with positive results. It was a really difficult moment for all of us

“We had to rearrange the line-up on the way to the stadium. We didn’t know our initial XI until the last moment. We had to include a player on the Match Day team who had not practiced with us for a whole week just to make a number.

“We did not practice for days ahead in our game against Chennai and now this. It’s not going to be easy for us. We can’t keep harping on these things for sure, but it’s easier said than done. “

For many, Friday’s issue could well be seen as a two-point drop – given the dominance of the Gauss, the missed opportunities and a goal that was dubiously denied.

However, taking everything into account, Friday night’s show at Bambolim should and should be considered as one of the bravest performances presented by FC Goa.

“People who went to the pitch gave their all. They made each of us proud, but I hope we don’t have to put them in that position again, “said Derrick.

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