ISL’s most successful side, ATK take on this season’s most dangerous upbeat side, FC Goa tonight at the Vivekananda Yuvabharati Krirangan Stadium, Salt Lake, Kolkata in an all important Kolkata-Goa tussle for the first time this year. ATK are facing them on the back of two successive wins over Mumbai City Fc & Delhi Dynamos Fc respectively. They are now placed 7th in the league standings with 8 points from 6 games while on the counterpart Fc Goa are at 5th position with 12 points from same number of games.

ATK will enter this game as a confident side aware of their positives and also of their shortcomings. They now stand in good stead after an uncharacteristic start to the season. The icing on the cake proved to be the Irish star’s maiden goal of the season in the last game as Robbie chested down a ball in the box from Bipin’s header onto him provided by a Conor Thomas long delivery and slotted it in the bottom corner past two markers and the goalie. It was sheer brillance from him. It showed what a player of Robbie Keane’s stature can do in the attacking front of ATK.

Inclusion of Ryan Taylor in the middle has bolstered the squad and also game play in the last two matches. He has influenced number of attacks in the box from his exquisite deliveries from set pieces and also through balls. Zequinha also has stepped up his game and has bamboozled the opposition with his trickery and shot making. Anwar Ali at the back with Thorpe,Ashutosh & Prabir have stood like a wall and has rubbed off attacks from the opposition with absolute grit and determination, so has ATK’s goalie Debjit Majumder with his good saves off late. They look like a formidable side now to defeat at home and would surely like to start off their New Year campaign with a bag full of three points.

While Fc Goa travel to Kolkata on the back of their maiden loss at home to Pune City Fc 0-2. Their merry run has been halted and they will look to overturn today’s result in their favour which is why they haven’t even practiced here in Kolkata to prevent eyes from gluing on to them to be aware of their strategies entering into the game. Coach Sergio Lobera is confident of his side turning things around and has mentioned their previous loss as just an off day in office. Fc Goa has outscored oppositions this season as they have found a lethal attacking line in Corominas who has already slotted 8 goals for his side and Lanzarote who has scored 5 uptill now. ATK defensive line have a uphill task in hand tonight if they are to prevent Fc Goa from getting into the scoring sheet. Parking the bus down won’t be of much help to Sheringham’s cause against such a quality attack.

One can surely hope for an attacking brand of positive football tonight at the Mecca of Indian football among these two sides descending from the football crazy regions of India, Kolkata & Goa !

Key players from both sides:

ATK- Zequinha,Robbie Keane

FC GOA- Corominas,Lanzarote

Head to head stats:

ATK 3 FC GOA 0 (TOTAL 8 GAMES)

2014: ATK 1 – 1 FC GOA

           FC GOA 1 – 2 ATK

Playoffs: ATK 0 – 0 FC GOA

                 FC GOA 0 – 0 ATK

2015: FC GOA 1 – 1 ATK

           ATK 4 – 0 FC GOA

2016: ATK 1 – 1 FC GOA

           FC GOA 1 – 2 ATK