Chennaiyin host ATK at their Pune ‘home’

The Chennai outfit is on a roll coming into the game, registering four straight victories that ensured their passage to the semis. They are only the second team to have achieved that feat. ATK, on the other hand, come into this game on the back of a 3-2 defeat to Mumbai City FC, squandering the chance to top the league. The result brought to an end ATK’s five-match unbeaten streak.

Iain Hume... 10 goals in his kitty.   -  ISL/SPORTZPICS

Chennaiyin FC will ‘host’ Atletico de Kolkata, at Pune’s Shiv Chhatrapati Shivaji Stadium, in the first leg of their semi-final on December 12.

The Chennai outfit is on a roll coming into the game, registering four straight victories that ensured their passage to the semis. They are only the second team to have achieved that feat. In that period, they found the back of the net 12 times while conceding only once. Chennaiyin will also have happy memories from the venue as their last league game there was a 1-0 victory against FC Pune City.

ATK, on the other hand, come into this game on the back of a 3-2 defeat to Mumbai City FC, squandering the chance to top the league. The result brought to an end ATK’s five-match unbeaten streak.

Habas’ view: Coach Antonio Lopez Habas blamed the result on off-field distractions. “I think it’s mainly due to too much concentration on other things. Too many distractions like the semis and the final,” he said after the game.

A head-to-head evaluation between the teams paints a different picture though as the reigning champions won both the group games against Chennai. They beat Chennaiyin in their backyard 3-2 in the inaugural game of this season and rounded off the double at home with a 2-1 win.

It will also be an interesting battle between the strikers, Chennaiyin FC’s Stiven Mendoza and ATK’s Iain Hume. Mendoza is the highest scorer in the league with 11 goals, while Hume is breathing down his neck with 10. Both strikers have two hat-tricks to their names.

Interesting historical fact: Both teams have had contrasting fortunes at this venue. Chennaiyin FC have never lost in Pune, drawing 1-1 in the inaugural season last year and beating the home team 1-0 this year. ATK also managed a 1-1 draw last season, but lost 1-0 this year.

VITAL STATISTICS

Chennaiyin FC:

Goals scored: 25

Goals conceded: 15

Shots on target: 99

Shots off target: 85

Ball possession: 51.43%

Biggest win: 4-0 versus FC Goa and Delhi Dynamos

Biggest defeat: 3-2 versus ATK, 2-0 versus NorthEast United FC and FC Goa

Top-scorer: Stiven Mendoza – 11

Atletico de Kolkata:

Goals scored: 26

Goals conceded: 17

Shots on target: 89

Shots off target: 67

Ball possession: 48.29%

Biggest win: 4-0 versus FC Goa

Biggest defeat: 3-2 versus Mumbai City FC

Top-scorer: Iain Hume - 10

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