ISL 2016: Atletico de Kolkata vs NorthEast United

Atletico de Kolkata and NorthEast United clashed for the second time in ISL 2016 at Rabindra Sarobar Stadium, Kolkata. The home side had the momentum from their last match where the team took the game towards a draw against the No.1, Delhi Dynamos. NorthEast United, on the other hand, was suffering from a winning drought since last five matches.

The last time when these teams collided, Atletico de Kolkata emerged victorious. However, in this game, the visitors made their intentions clear by scoring the first goal within five minutes of the match.

Sereno opted to play a square ball back to his partner Arnab Mondal after being pressured by Alfaro, without sensing Nicolas Velez lurking behind. On top of that, the pass was decidedly poor, giving Arnab Mondal no chance but to attempt a slide to reach it, which saw Nicolas Velez round off an onrushing Debjit Majumder to slot the ball into an empty net.

Nicolas Velez
Image Courtesy: ISL

Jose Molina would be cursing his stars after seeing his team’s defense lapse at the forefront yet again. Atletico de Kolkata has been suffering from bad defensive performances since last couple of matches due to which, the team has not recorded a win since three games.

Atletico had the opportunity for an equaliser within next five minutes when Iain Hume followed a Prabir Das cross from the right and got in front of Mailson Alves. The Canadian headed it towards Helder Postiga but the latter failed to connect with the ball.

Atletico de Kolkata came all guns blazing during the first half but was not able to take their attack to the finish line. The crowd at the stadium came to the corner of their seats after seeing the home team leaving nothing to score an equaliser.

At halftime, NorthEast United maintained the lead by 1-0 and Atletico de Kolkata was on the way to becoming the team against which, NorthEast United ended the team’s winless streak.

After the interval, Atletico continued to attack and Javi Lara came very close to scoring the goal in the 53rd minute when his corner from the left side was missed by Subrata and the ball was going to sneak into the far corner of the post but Robin Gurung deflected it with a tremendous header.

At the hour mark, the visitors came back to attacking and tried to seal the match with another goal. However, none of their efforts were enough to let the ball feel the warmth of the nets again.

The game was closing in with NorthEast United leading it with 1-0 but much Atletico de Kolkata’s relief, Iain Hume took the game towards a draw with a help of a goal that came from nowhere.

Javi Lara was given a free kick in the 90th minute of the game which Postiga headed expertly to the far corner. The ball seemed to be going into the goal but Hume took no chance and stabbed it in from close range giving no chance to the goalkeeper to defend.

Iain Hume
Image Courtesy: ISL

The crowd erupted with cheer and the game ended at 1-1. Atletico de Kolkata retained the 4th position of the ISL 2016 League tally and NorthEast United took the 7th position.

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18 November 2016
Rohan Jaitly

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