Both Atletico de Kolkata and NorthEast United FC coaches voiced their concerns regarding the little time for rejuvenation leading to the huge injury list this season.
Injuries a a term most managers dread from especially if it is to his own players, while sometimes praying for injuries to opponents especially ahead of a upcoming match. With injuries ravaging both Atletico de Kolkata and NorthEast United FC, the talking point in the pre-match press conference revolved around injuries.
The press conference was riddled with question regarding availability of players and both managers when quizzed about the possible reasons behind the huge injury list, rued of having to play every third or fourth day.
Northeast Manager Cesar Farias said: a The format of the league is bit different compared to elsewhere. Ita s a difficult league. The time between two matches is short. Injuries happen all the time. Some of the injuries were unfortunate ones and is not due to training.a
While Farias constantly refuted suggestion of injuries due to training, he did offer an insight about Simao Sabrosa and his impact against Delhi Dynamos.
a Simao has an inspiring personality. He inspires everbody, his teammates, his coaches even the referee.
a Simao gives us the best result when he comes off the bench and we plan to use him in special moments.a
Atletico de Kolkata coach Antonio Lopez Habas, who faced the media duties a bit later, agreed with the opinion of Farias that the schedule has played some part behind the lengthy injury list across all eight teams.
“He is not wrong logically. You have to train, and play matches every three or four days. Players get very little time to rejuvenate. Injuries are bound to happen.”
It wasna t all doom and gloom as Habas provided the news of Helder Postigaa s return, that would sound like music to the Atletico de Kolkata supporters especially after the recent goal scoring troubles. The Portuguese marquee player will be arriving in Kolkata on 15th November and should be available for selection, but Habas was more keen to reintroduce Mohammed Rafique as an Atletico de Kolkata player.
Rafique, who was released by Atletico de Kolkata during the offseason, was re-signed after injuries had thinned out the squad. Habas, though, was quick to stress that Rafique will have an important role to play.
a There are some injuries, who are on the way to recovery and I think Rafique is a good addition. I know he is a good player and he is very important for us now. He has an important role to play.a
Rafique, who had signed up for East Bengal, divulged that there werena t any hard feelings after Atletico de Kolkata opted not to sign him for the second season.
a I am from Kolkata that makes being part of Atletico de Kolkata something special. I would try to perform better for Atletico de Kolkata. It is easier to adapt with known faces from last time still around in the team.a
Image Courtesy: ISL Media