ATK FC Sponsor FC Goa in the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan at Kolkata on Saturday.
ATK, however, will need to do without head coach Antonio Lopez Habas, that had been shown a red card at ATK’s last game against Kerala and will not be accessible on the sidelines for the Goa match. In his stead, assistant coach Manuel Perez will take control from the dugout on Saturday and faced the press in the pre-match press conference on Friday. Asked if Habas’ lack in the dressing room will be a handicap for the group, he said,”We’re a team, a collective. We understand how to play. Together with the head trainer inaccessible in the sidelines, we’ll go about our business as we do.”
Reiterating the importance of success in the competition, Perez opined, “It is important to win the game. It’s not only about the 3 points. It’s an essential match. Goa have been competing with us for the best spot through the season and a win on Saturday will be vital. We must beat them, no matter the outcome. We feel good when playing at home and we’ll attempt to win.”
“We’ll be in Kolkata. The town, for us, is unique because we’ll be playing in front of our house service. We’ll play Goa and take the three things,” he added.
Perez also verified that both Pronay Halder and David Williams are doubtful for the game.
Sharing his view on the recently announced amalgamation of ATK and Mohun Bagan for next season, Perez said, “This is major news for Indian soccer. They’ll enter another season together. We must respect both the Mohun Bagan fans and their own history. We also must respect the ATK lovers, who’ve been with the group for the past couple of decades. I believe it’s great news”
Defender Agustin Iniguez, who followed Perez into the briefing, shared his thoughts about the game and noted,”We understand Goa is very great, among the finest in the league. But we’re in good shape. It was a terrible match for us.