ISL 2017: Injured ATK striker Robbie Keane to be out of action for around five weeks
Robbie Keane has gone back to Ireland for treatment after suffering an Achilles injury.
What’s the story?
Defending champions ATK have confirmed that their marquee player for the ISL 2017, Robbie Keane will miss the first three to five weeks of the tournament, due to an Achilles injury.
In case you didn’t know…
Robbie Keane is one of the biggest international stars to have joined the ISL this season. Former Tottenham Hotspur striker has impressed one and all with his goal scoring abilities in the Premier League, and with his national side Ireland.
Heart of the matter
New ATK manager Teddy Sheringham, at the ISL 2017 pre-season press conference in Kolkata, announced that Keane has picked up an Achilles injury, during the team’s pre-season camp in Dubai.
"Robbie Keane has picked up an Achilles problem in Dubai, he's been taking a few injections for it but will be out for the first few weeks,” Sheringham confirmed.
He further went on to state that the injury had not seemed so severe in the initial stages, but now the Irishman has had to go back to his native Ireland for further treatment.
“Initially we thought he would be fine soon, but the problem did not go away, and he has gone back to Ireland for treatment. We hope he returns soon, but he is likely to miss three to five matches, at least," he said.
This comes as a huge blow for ATK, who are looking to make it three titles in their four seasons in the ISL. ATK are set to kick off the tournament at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi against last season’s finallists Kerala Blaster.
This means that ATK could well go on to miss Keane for up to five games. They are set to play Kerala Blasters, FC Pune City, Jamshedpur FC, Chennaiyin FC, and Mumbai City FC in their first five matches.
While Keane’s absence could be a huge blow for ATK, it remains to be seen what kind of an impact the former Spurs striker could have on the Kolkata side, once he recovers from injury. At the age of 37, we can say that Keane is well past his prime. However, all that ATK need from him is his goal scoring, and if he can find the net on a regular basis for his side, ATK could well be looking at playing yet another ISL final.