East Bengal FC head coach Carles Cuadrat was pleased with the three points but exercised caution after his team's victory against Hyderabad FC in ISL 2023-24 at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, in Kolkata, on Saturday.
Silva struck a fine brace to power East Bengal to their maiden win of the Indian Super League (ISL 2023-24) season as they beat Hyderabad FC 2-1 at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on Saturday.
Cuadrat was happy with the three points, but said he was aware of how difficult the game was going to be against Hyderabad FC. He further warned his team to be cautious about fine margins, which could decide games.
"It was a game with not a lot of chances. Our team created more chances the other day. But this is football. Hyderabad FC is used to being competitive with very narrow margins. Last season, in a lot of games they finished 1-0. The players knew that they had to manage that kind of result. Now, with the new rules that are happening, lot of games are around 100 minutes. "
"So we were focused that anything could happen. It's true that a set-piece can change anything and it was a moment of brilliance with Cleiton scoring that wonderful goal. We are celebrating these three points but we have to be conscious that narrow margins are always here in the ISL," Cuadrat said in the post-match press conference.
Both teams scored in the opening 10 minutes to set the tone of the of the ISL 2023-24 game. Hyderabad built an attacking offensive move from the right flank and Australian striker Joe Knowles received a cross with perfection at the edge of the box on the left side.
He displayed commendable footwork to get past three defenders before cutting back and taking a shot at goal. He couldn't get enough power behind the shot but Hitesh Sharma was at the right place at the right time to find the back of the net.
The home side equalised within a couple of minutes and it was former Hyderabad FC player Borja Herrera who was the architect. Carles Cuadrat's side went direct as Herrera received a long ball and moved to the left to make space and have a go at goal. Silva was at the right spot to latch onto the loose ball and beat the 'keeper to make it 1-1.
East Bengal took a quick corner in the 36th minute, which caught the Hyderabad defence by surprise. The ball was directed to Silva again, who outjumped his marker but his header flew slightly above the crossbar.
The second half of this ISL 2023-24 was a similarly equal affair as both teams struggled at to seize control. They used different strategies to do so: Hyderabad head coach Conor Nestor made four substitutes, while Cuadrat stuck to his starting XI and delayed his substitutions.
It was Silva who made the difference again in this ISL 2023-24 match as he struck a phenomenal free-kick at the brink of injury time. Stepping up to take the set-piece, the striker displayed impeccable technique to curl the ball into the top left corner and ensured that East Bengal bagged all three points from the game.
East Bengal FC will next take on Bengaluru FC on October 4, while Hyderabad FC will square off against Jamshedpur FC in ISL 2023-24 on October 5.