As Kerala’s Santosh Trophy probables labored on set items on the Calicut University Stadium at Thenipalam in Malappuram on Friday night, head coach Satheevan Balan saved shouting out directions. The coach and gamers seemed to be in a little bit of a rush.
A seven-time National champion, Kerala begins its Santosh Trophy marketing campaign towards Gujarat in Goa on October 11 however heavy rain has disrupted the staff’s coaching. The camp for the probables started on September 15 and after two elimination rounds, rain has robbed the gamers of 5 days’ coaching.
“We were supposed to have a friendly (against Kerala Police) today but that has been cancelled. The ground is water-logged,” Satheevan advised The Hindu on Saturday.
“If this is the condition, we may have to go to the Santosh Trophy without playing a single practice match.”
Just 12 gamers from final 12 months’s Kerala staff made it to the pruned record of 34 and greater than half within the closing 22-member staff – prone to be introduced on October 4 or 5 – are anticipated to make their National Championship debut. That is why Satheevan, who had coached Kerala to the Santosh Trophy victory in 2018, is eager that they play a couple of matches earlier than the primary occasion. Satheevan can be eager to know the way efficient his strikers are.
“The problem we often face is, we lack a sharp finisher. Even when I coached the 2018 side, I did not have a star striker, somebody we can confidently say that he would score goals,” stated Satheevan.
“Now, we are trying to bring in midfielders and others to that position, try game plans and score goals. Mostly, midfielders and wingers are scoring. The two strikers we have now, E. Sajeesh (Kerala Police) and Muhammed Ashiq (who played the National Games), have height and look good in training but we will know for sure whether they can score only when they play matches.”
They higher be good for Kerala is in powerful Group ‘A’ within the Santosh Trophy’s first stage with Goa, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh. The first stage has six teams and solely the winners are assured of computerized berths to the ultimate section in Arunachal Pradesh.
The greatest three second-placed groups together with defending champion Karnataka, runner-up Meghalaya and host Arunachal will play the 12-team closing section.
“Host Goa will be our main rival, if we want to qualify directly, we will have to beat Goa. The Goans have not come to the semifinals of the Nationals in a long time, but they have taken this Santosh Trophy, at home, very seriously,” defined the coach.
“That is why they made Derrick Pereira their coach. Jammu Kashmir is also a strong team. A lot of clubs have come up in J&K, the national camp (under-16) was held there recently. That will benefit their State team, they will get the Second Division I-League players and the reserve players of I-League teams. “And Gujarat has a few Malayalis… we cannot see any team is inferior to us.”