ISL: Top spot up for grabs as ATK faces NEUFC

NorthEast United FC and Atletico de Kolkata will be hungry to make amends and surge to the top of the Hero Indian Super League table with a victory on Friday.

Atletico De Kolkata can move to the top of the table with a win.   -  Special Arrangement

NorthEast United FC and Atletico de Kolkata will be hungry to make amends and surge to the top of the Hero Indian Super League table.

NorthEast was unlucky to lose against defending champion Chennaiyin FC in its last game and Atletico de Kolkata lost its first match of the season when it went down fighting to Mumbai City FC in front of Arsenal legend Thierry Henry at home. The teams now meet in a seventh round clash of the ISL at Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, Guwahati, on Friday, and both teams will have their eyes on the top spot.

“Our team has potential and quality and we can work and develop on many things. Sometimes you need a little bit of luck. We were not lucky (against Chennaiyin FC) but in 14 games I believe we can be lucky and win in spite of not playing as good as we played against Chennaiyin FC,” said NorthEast United coach Nelo Vingada.

NorthEast started with a flourish in this edition of the ISL winning both the matches at home but since then it has suffered a dip in form picking up just four points from its last four matches. The return to Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium should boost confidence and although it did not pocket anything from the last game, The Professor should be confident that it can return to the top of a table with a win, or even a draw.

NorthEast United is currently placed second with 10 points from six matches but a point or more will take them above Mumbai City FC who are perched at the top with 11 points.

Atletico de Kolkata will also have its eyes on the top spot as the race to occupy the top four positions and win qualification to the semifinals hots up.

Atletico de Kolkata has five points from its last four matches but it is the loss in the last clash against Mumbai City FC that will hurt them. It was its first loss in the competition and came despite the host having chances to turn the tables.

The visitor also suffered the ignominy of seeing chief coach Jose Molina sent to the stands by the referee for repeatedly protesting against referee’s decisions. He will not be on the bench for Friday’s clash.

Atletico de Kolkata, who won the league in 2014, are placed third on the table with nine points from six matches.

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