ISL: Viable out-turns from the NorthEast United vs ATK game
Sportsbet.io discusses the situations that will do the talking in NorthEast United’s crunch fixture against ATK in the Indian Super League.
NorthEast United, one of the two remaining unbeaten teams in the ISL this year, have failed to register a clean sheet at home and are poised to keep a free-scoring ATK at bay. The Highlanders have been effective late bloomers in their games this season, scoring five goals and conceding just twice in the second half. While a win takes NorthEast to the summit of the points table, the home side must avoid complacency against ATK, who have enjoyed their trips to Guwahati in the past.
Two-time ISL champions ATK have lost once in Guwahati, apart from keeping three clean sheets in five games. The Sourav Ganguly-owned team have scored 12 goals in six games this term, their best return in history, and aim to build upon their win success rate of 60% at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium.
Who can score first
In the ten meetings between NorthEast United and ATK, the Highlanders have scored the first goal on five occasions, and thus, are favourites to open the scoring in the latest matchup. Although, as Kolkata have scored in all but one game this season, one cannot rule out the possibility of the two-time champions grabbing the initial advantage.
The average scoreline of this fixture, over the years, has been a nail-biting 1-0 win and hence the latest showdown should see a similar outcome. Concerning who would claim the bragging rights, ATK are placed on the money line to win and reclaim the top spot on the leaderboard.
Highest scoring half
Given that NorthEast have been far more effective in the second half of their fixtures this season, we envisage a high scoring final frontier in the meeting with ATK. The visitors have scored four goals post the 76th minute and thus, will give a tough fight to claim the final honours.
ATK are poised to register their fourth clean sheet in six games at Guwahati, although a confident NorthEast United could spoil the party for the visitors.
Ghanaian superstar Asamoah Gyan has found the net in each of NorthEast United’s home fixtures this season and is the odds-on favourite to score first in the fixture against ATK. The 34-year-old striker has three goals and an assist in six games and is poised to lead the Highlanders to their fourth win over the visitors.
Fiji captain Roy Krishna has made a bright start to his ISL career with ATK, with four goals and an assist in six appearances. The 32-year-old has a goal conversion rate of 28.57% this term and is well-placed to score the first goal tonight.
Words: William Paul