We have to be brave when we play in Singapore: Roca

Coach Albert Roca tasted success in his first game in charge when the Blues put it past Tampines Rovers in the first leg of the AFC Cup quarterfinal on Wednesday evening. Post the win he spoke about his thoughts on the game and what he expects the team to do in what will be a vital second leg away at Singapore next week…

His thoughts on the win

I am satisfied about the result and the performance from my side. The conditions were a little strange with no fans in the stadium as it was our first official game in three and a half months. The result could have been better as we created some good opportunities. But in football, you are never happy. There is always room for improvement. This game has been a good experience for the players. There are lots of areas for improvement, in defence, in attack, in the transition and we will work on them.

On the defensive strategy

We knew that Jordan Webb, Pennant and Billy Mehmet were probably their best players so we tried to prevent them from seeing too much of the ball. It was about creating superiority in defence and we did that well. It was only in the second half that they were able to create some chances.

On the performances of new signings Alvaro Rubio, Juan Gonzalez and Cameron Watson

I was impressed with the performances of the new signings. The intention was to always have them improve the performances of the other players around them. I am happy because they were really focused. It was a chance for them to show their potential. I hope they will continue like this.

About the game-plan going into the second leg of the quarterfinal.

We know that Tampines have nothing to lose. They will go all out in Singapore and we must be wary of that. I’m sure we will be ready for it and we’ll try to get through to the next round. Our intention will be to score a goal, which will increase our chances. What I want is a team who is not scared and who plays at the same level that they showed today.

About Eugeneson Lyngdoh’s new position

Eugene isn’t a winger but he has a lot of energy. He is good at taking advantage of the full-backs and creating chances. It is sometimes impossible to put players in their own position, but Eugene is a professional. He is already improving and having a better vision of how the new system requires him to play.

On the absence of fans in the stadium

I know that fans have always been a strong point here and I missed them even though I’ve never been here before. I’ve seen a lot of BFC games on video before and I understand it’s a shame. It would have been a nice match for them to be part of but hopefully we can progress and bring them one more game.

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