ISL 2019-20: Battle of the best attacking forces as Goa takes on ATK

When FC Goa welcomes ATK on Saturday, it will be a battle of the two best attacks in the league. ATK has scored 15 goals while FC Goa has pumped 13 so far.

Goa’s attack is expected to be boosted by the return of star striker Ferran Corominas (centre).   -  ISL Media

Two of the most attacking sides in the Indian Super League (ISL) -- FC Goa and ATK -- lock horns at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium here on Saturday.

Goa, known for its fluid attacking style, has not exactly been at its best this season due to a variety of factors including injuries and suspensions. Despite that, it has picked up points even from lost causes, coming up with injury-time equalisers on at least three occasions.

The Gaurs find themselves third on the table with 12 points from seven games. Their opponent, ATK, has been brilliant ever since its opening day loss against Kerala Blasters FC. ATK is unbeaten in six games now and sits on top of the table with 14 points.

The match also sees the two best attacks in the league go head to head. ATK has scored 15 goals while FC Goa has pumped 13 so far.

Goa’s attack is expected to be further boosted by the return of star striker Ferran Corominas. Also, the form of Brandon Fernandes has been key to Sergio Lobera’s team. He was instrumental in Goa’s 1-0 win over Hyderabad in the last game, assisting Manvir Singh’s winner. With four assists, the midfielder has the joint-most assists this season.

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“We are playing against FC Goa and not just (Ferran) Corominas. I know Corominas is an important player, but we don’t have any special tactics for him. Normally I don’t choose one player from the opposition or from my team. I understand football is a collective sport and not an individual sport,” said ATK head coach Antonio Habas.

ATK’s attack, however, carries an equal if not a greater threat. Led by Roy Krishna, who leads the scoring charts this season with six goals, and David Williams, ATK has the ability to score at will. Add the creativity of Javier Hernandez and Edu Garcia into the mix, the Goan midfield will have to be at their best.

More importantly, ATK wouldn’t mind Goa enjoying most of the possession, given the pace it has going forward. Antonio Habas’ team is deadly on the counter and when given space to attack, Krishna and Williams are near unstoppable as NorthEast United found out in a 3-0 defeat last time out.

“For me, you will have to defend your goal and give your best. We have good strikers playing in front for us. We need to play hard and keep the concentration for every game, not only for ATK,” said Goa coach Sergio Lobera.

Interestingly, Lobera’s Goa has never lost to an ATK side while Antonio Habas’ ATK team has never lost to Goa.

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