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ISL 2018/19: "We will miss players like John Johnson," says Bengaluru FC coach Carles Cuadrat ahead of ATK clash

684   //    31 Oct 2018, 08:00 IST

Carles Cuadrat was Bengaluru FC's assistant coach till the last season
Carles Cuadrat was Bengaluru FC's assistant coach till the last season

Bengaluru FC has played just three matches in the Indian Super League so far, but the team has shown consistency in their performance. So far, they have accumulated 7 points with a couple of wins and a draw. After a one-week gap, Sunil Chhetri and Co. is all set to face ATK at the iconic Salt Lake stadium on Wednesday evening.

English defender John Johnson, who was part of Bengaluru FC till the last season, will now play against them for the first time on Wednesday evening. Bengaluru FC’s coach Carles admitted that the team will miss a player of his calibre. “We are sorry to miss players like John Johnson. Unfortunately, tomorrow he’ll be playing in another shirt, but we’ll have to do with that,” said the coach during the pre-match press conference.

He feels that Johnson was an integral part of Bengaluru FC’s success in the past and his personality uplifts the dressing room of any team he plays for. Regarding the matter, Carles said, “It’s very difficult to work at his absence. It’s because he’s not an excellent player, but an excellent person. He gives a lot to the locker room with his high personality. He was really important for the history of Bengaluru.”

John Johnson was roped in by ATK ahead of the new season from Bengaluru FC. The English stopper was part of each and every tournament they won, which includes two I-League titles, one Federation Cup title and one Indian Super Cup. He is by far one of the best defenders to have played in the Indian football circuit in recent years.

Spanish tactician Carles Cuadrat is not taking the game lightly, especially after ATK’s display in the past three matches. Carles said, “I think ATK is an excellent team. If you see in the last 3 games, they’ve got 7 points, the same as us in the last three games. They are hungry to win the game.”

He added, “The International break helped them readjust and make some changes to the team. They have excellent individuals who can change the game and we have a lot of respect for them,”

With both the teams playing consistent football in the past few matches, the Salt Lake stadium is set to witness an enthralling match when ATK and Bengaluru FC face of each other in the midweek fixture.