Riding high after tasting success with the much-needed win against Goa FC in their home ground, the beleaguered NorthEast United FC will need to fire all cylinders to be in contention in this season of Indian Super League when they take on ATK in a ninth round Super League clash at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, Sarusajai in Guwahati later today.
The win against Goa came after a long draught from successive losses and the first after former Chelsea manager Avram Grant took over the reins from Joao de Deus, the Portuguese coach who was sacked mid-way of the season.
The Highlanders had won just one game among their seven outings before the 2-1 win against Goa under de Deus finding themselves just one spot above the lowest in the points table.
Grant will look to maintain the same momentum and aggression shown during the match against ATK, though the management is tight-lipped over the team strategies ahead of Friday’s encounter. A win will definitely boost the team morale leaps and bounds which will also be an asserting point for Grant on whom the John Abraham co-owned franchise has reposed faith.
Going by the statistics, ATK have also won on just two occasions in their eight games.
NorthEast United FC will have to play all out for the crucial three points. A win for NorthEast who are at the ninth position with seven points from eight matches will catapult them over ATK placed at the eighth spot with nine points from eight outings.
ATK will take the ground without star striker Robbie Keane who had suffered an injury against Bengaluru FC and is ruled out of Friday’s clash.