Football

ATK hosts Chennaiyin in an interesting duel

Former is targetting topping the league, while the latter is aiming for the play-offs

ATK will look to complete its concluding home assignment of ISL’s sixth season when it takes on a resurgent Chennaiyin FC at the Salt Lake Stadium here on Sunday.

The clash of two of the most successful sides of the tournament — with each winning twice — is likely to offer an exciting contest as both need a win to realise their individual objectives. ATK needs a win to join FC Goa at the top of the standings and keep its Asian Champions League qualification dream intact while Chennaiyin needs a favourable result to keep its play-off chances alive.

Both sides have scored four wins in their last five outings and have established themselves as two of the best attacking outfits in the current season. While ATK has maintained a better level of consistency — winning 10 matches in 16 appearances (33 points) so far — Chennaiyin has made a spectacular turnaround after making a mediocre start and has six wins in 15 outings (22 points).

Peak performance

“At the moment the performance level is absolutely at its peak for us, but we have to keep on playing that way. It is going to be a good match as both Chennaiyin and ATK play very good football. Our target is to keep on winning the next match every day,” ATK’s Spanish head coach, Antonio Lopez Habas, said.

Chennaiyin FC’s Scottish head coach, Owen Coyle, also predicted a close contest considering the targets the opponents have set for themselves. Coyle, who set Chennaiyin on a recovery path since taking over from outgoing coach John Gregory early in December, said his boys are eager to finish the job.

“ATK and Chennaiyin are two-time champions for a reason. We have to take our chances to get to the top-four position. It is remarkable what we have done to be where we are now. We have to try and finish our job,” said Colye while stressing how his team recovered from the bottom of the table to emerge as one of the contenders for a play-off berth.

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Printable version | Jul 7, 2020 12:54:58 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/atk-hosts-chennaiyin-in-an-interesting-duel/article30830682.ece

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