Guwahati: Boosted by the arrival of former Chelsea manger Avram Grant a struggling NorthEast United will look to change it’s fortunes when they take on FC Goa at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium here on Saturday.
The Israeli who guided Chelsea to the Champions League and League Cup finals in his only season with the club in 2008, has already created a belief among the ‘Highlanders’ of things soon turning around for them.
“The mood has changed (in the dressing room) with arrival of the new (technical) advisor. The boys are geared up and ready for tomorrow’s match,” said goalkeeping coach Joseph Siddy at the pre-match conference.
It could not have been a better time for the fomer Ghana national coach to spread his vast knowledge and experience about the gam, with NorthEast playing as many as three home games on the trot that begins with an encounter against an upbeat FC Goa.
Sissy however was hopeful that the new technical advisor’s influence ‘will help the team’. “His experience and coaching style will motivate us and will give us the confidence to do well in future matches,” he added.
But beating an ultra-confident Goa is easier said than done. They showed remarkable fighting spirit to hold the defending champions ATK to a 1-1 stalemate despite arriving at the stadium barely an hour before kick-off and will be raring to return to winning ways.
Facing a side that has won just one match in a total of seven games and is currently struggling with four consecutive losses, this might just be the chance for Sergio Lobera’s men to return back to wins, after that hard fought 0-2 loss to FC Pune and a draw at Kolkata.
The Spaniard however refused to take the ‘Highlanders’ lightly. Goa’s sudden coutner-attacks have surprised the opponents more often than not and Lobera added that such small details might make the difference on Saturday.
“All the teams are well balanced. They are equal and it’s the small details which make the difference in each game.”