KOZHIKODE, FEBRUARY 11: VP Suhair had a standout performance against Mohun Bagan at Salk Lake, where he wore captain’s armband to lead Malabarians to a spirited draw in Kolkata.
Though the match ended in a 2-2 draw, the players fought well to earn a crucial point against the side coached by Khalid Jamil. In the match, Suhair had impressive statistics of 38 passes, one assist, 12 successful challenges and seven dribbles.
The number of passes and the challenges is outstanding for a striker in the I-League and he also had a well-drilled, amazing assist to Marcus Joseph. The forward, who comes from Edathanattukara in Palakkad believes the spirited display was because he was motivated by being the captain of the team for the first time.
“It instilled a great amount of confidence in me. I had a good match there. We could have won it. My teammates fought well and collectively to come up with a telling performance,” said Suhair, who is back in the city after their exhaustive Real Kashmir match.
Real Kashmir match
In the Real Kashmir match, Suhair came in as a 60-th minute substitute. However, he was restrained by the ground conditions. He was not able to play his key ground passes, in which he had fared well at Kolkata.
“I understood it would be very tough for Suhair. He is a fantastic player with the ball but I wanted to play high balls. So I decided to bench him and start with players who have height. However, nothing worked as the weather was so bad and the ball was not moving,” said Gift Raikhan, the technical director.
“The conditions were there horrible for us. It was very cold there and we were not able to adapt to it. For some of us, it took two days to breath properly. During the match it was snowing heavily and the ground became unplayable. After initial minutes our players started to struggle with the conditions. Even the foreigners found it difficult,” said Suhair.
Suhair now looks for better results in the upcoming matches. “We need to win all the matches. The team has the ability to do so. We need to push for it and we will do it,” said the forward.
Gokulam Kerala FC play Indian Arrows at EMS Corporation Stadium in Kozhikode on February 16th at 5 PM.