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ATK's Doutie ruled out of NorthEast ISL match

Modified 20 Mar 2019

Kolkata, Nov 16 (IANS) Atletico de Kolkata (ATK) will be without the services of their in-form footballer Sameehg Doutie who has been ruled out Thursday's home clash against NorthEast United FC due to injury, coach Jose Molina said on Wednesday.

"Doutie is not available. Yes, he is a very important player to us. He has proved that in the last matches. We are hoping he recovers as soon as possible," Molina told reporters here.

South African winger Doutie has so far scored two goals in the third season of the tournament and has been instrumental in ATK's decent campaign so far. ATK are fourth in the standings with 13 points from nine matches, fourth behind leaders Delhi Dynamos.

"You can lose some players for injuries. This is football. I have to accept it," the Spaniard said.

Asked about their defensive frailties, having conceded 10 goals in nine matches so far, Molina said, "Sometimes I do change the back four and look to rotate and see who is the best player for a particular match."

"I am happy with our defenders. It's true we would have liked to suffer less goals. We are working that out."

Molina said rather than his team's defensive midfielders, it is the defenders who need to take the blame for the goals allowed in.

"If we are suffering goals that is because of defence. I am not worried about back four. I don't need someone on top of back four."

Molina was critical of the referees in the ATK's last game against Delhi Dynamos, which they drew 2-2. Asked about their supervision standards, which have come up for debate often, Molina remained coy.

"I won't speak anymore. I hope the refereeing is better in this game. The penalty in the last game was debatable. But past is past. Referees can do mistakes and it's part of football."


Molina brushed aside talks that ATK were not playing aggressive football.

"I think we are playing aggressively. We have the second most shots on goal after Delhi. I don't see any problem."

ATK are the only team in the ISL so far not to have an Indian scorer. Molina put it down to not having local strikers.

"We have Juan Belencoso, Iain Hume, Helder Postiga as strikers unlike others teams like Chennai who have Jeje Lalpekhlua and Goa have Robin Singh. I would like Bidyananda Singh or a Dika (Lalrindika Ralte) to come from midfield and score."

On Debjit Mazumder's impressive form, Molina said without a great goalkeeper no team in the world can be successful.

"You look at any team and they are great because they have great keepers. We have been working really hard on Debjit and that is showing."



Published 16 Nov 2016, 17:57 IST
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