ISL 7: Every team who won could have lost their game, says Baxter

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Odisha FC coach Stuart Baxter (Photo/ Sportzpics)
Odisha FC coach Stuart Baxter (Photo/ Sportzpics)

Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], December 16 (ANI): Odisha FC have just one point from five games in the ongoing seventh edition of the Indian Super League (ISL) but coach Stuart Baxter has refused to blame his defence alone for the result.

Odisha FC have scored the least number of goals in the tournament so far and is second from the bottom in the points table having lost four out of five games. Baxter feels all the ISL teams could have lost the games they won, suggesting that no side, in particular, has dominated the tournament so far.

"I don't think conceding goals is a direct responsibility of the centre-backs. I don't think the centre-backs' performances have been substandard. I think, in some games, we have defended very well but it's a contribution that we all must make to make sure that we get clean sheets," Baxter said in a pre-match press conference on Wednesday.

"Every game at the moment for us is tough but if you look at the league in general, every team wins the game could possibly have lost the game. We have experienced in our games; the small things have big impact," he added.

Odisha FC will look register their first win of the league when they lock horns with Bengaluru FC at the GMC Stadium, Bambolim, on Wednesday. Coach Baxter feels Bengaluru have done well in the tournament and the game against the former champions will be a "tough" one.

"I think Bengaluru have done well. They started also with a few issues to iron out but they have been making progress. It will certainly be a very tough game," said Baxter.

He also highlighted why the January transfer window will be full of danger by saying, "Identifying which players we need at this moment is probably not a good idea. The January market is going to be one full of danger.

"You have got quarantine, you have got to identify the player, he has got to acclimatise to the Indian game and new teammates. By the time, he has done that it may be the close of the season. So, we will think about it but at this time, we haven't got any concrete plans," the coach added.

The former South Africa coach also asserted, "We are banking on all the players really. When you select them you give them the confidence and the belief that you think that they can do the job for the team. The 11 players they go on the field, will have my full support and the confidence of everybody." (ANI)