FC Goa goes into its final home league game of the season with an excellent opportunity of taking one step closer to the semifinals of the Hero Indian Super League.
Sergio Lobera's charges rallied to take a point from the defending champion away in Kolkata after a series of unfortunate events in January, but their campaign took a disastrous turn following that.
Irish marquee signing Robbie Keane scored the opener early on and it was cancelled out by Manuel Arana Rodriguez mid-way through the first 45 minutes. For the home side, a win will take it into the top four, giving it an advantage going into the final league game of the season against Jamshedpur FC.
Naveen Kumar has been a revelation since making his debut for the club. He kept the team’s first clean sheet of the season in 16 games against an in-form FC Pune City and will definitely continue in goal for the side.
Bruno Pinheiro has been struggling with injury in the last couple of weeks and looks unlikely to be fit in time to face the Kolkata franchise. Sergio Juste has stepped into his shoes and has done a good job for the team alongside Ali Mohammad. Seriton Fernandes and Narayan Das will continue to occupy the full-back positions.
FC Goa will be without the services of midfield anchor Ahmed Jahouh who is suspended for this match. Pronay Halder deputized for Edu Bedia who was absent in the last match and did a fine job for the team.
Edu will be back against ATK and will most likely partner Pronay in midfield. Brandon Fernandes was also absent from the last fixture through injury and it will be interesting to see if Sergio gives the Goan winger a start against Kolkata.
Mandar Rao Dessai will start on the left side along with Moroccan attacker Hugo Boumous who has netted twice in two starts so far. Manuel Lanzarote took his goal tally to nine for the season after scoring against the Stallions and will be looking to increase that number against Kolkata.
Up front, Ferran Corominas will resume his attending duties after adding two more goals to his tally in the last match.
Goa has never beaten ATK in the history of the competition and will be looking to change that statistic going into this encounter. With the men in red and white struggling for form, the Goans will hope they can finally get one up on their rivals.
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