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ISL

I'm not intimidated by the crowd in Kochi – Ashique Kuruniyan before ATKMB v Kerala Blasters

ATK Mohun Bagan winger Ashique Kuruniyan is not afraid of the Kerala Blasters fan in Kochi ahead of the ISL clash between ATKMB and Kerala Blasters.

Im not intimidated by the crowd in Kochi – Ashique Kuruniyan before ATKMB v Kerala Blasters
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Ashique Kuruniyan with goal scorer Manvir Singh in first game. (Source: ATKMB Twitter)

By

Aswathy Santhosh

Updated: 16 Oct 2022 5:01 AM GMT

ATK Mohun Bagan is set to face Kerala Blasters FC in the Sunday blockbuster at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Kochi on 16th October. They're looking to bounce back from the close defeat against Chennaiyin FC in the first game of Hero Indian Super League season 9 at their home.

Kerala-born Ashique Kuruniyan doesn't think that he'll be bothered by the atmosphere in Kochi. He said " I was born in Malappuram, I grew up watching 7s matches. So I don't think it'll affect me much. " He was also linked to Kerala Blasters on multiple transfer windows, he thinks that this isn't the right time to discuss transfers. "I have a five-year contract with ATK Mohun Bagan. So let's think about it later".

Head Coach Juan Ferrando is optimistic ahead of the game. He said " I think it's an important match for both the teams and the atmosphere is amazing. We came here to get three points, same with Kerala Blasters. I hope it'll be an amazing match."

Juan added about the loss against Chennaiyin FC. " We've 19 games in front of us to play. Every match is crucial. We are ready and we will try to get the 3 points, this is important and not the past. We have a new opportunity tomorrow."

Striker Roy Krishna joined Bengaluru FC in the transfer window and as it stands ATKMB does not have a foreign striker. However, Juan Ferrando doesn't think that the departure of Roy Krishna has affected his team tactically.

" No. Football is to create spaces and use them, for me it's not important who scores. What's important for me is that the team create chances. Sometimes we missed some clear chances, but we are working with the team and I trust my squad 100%."

Ashique Kuruniyan added that it is every football players dream to play in front of a packed stadium. "As football players, we all like to play in front of a good crowd. I'm not intimidated by it. I don't know about how others are feeling."

The Spaniard concluded by mentioning the injury concerns. " I can't say that we have any injury concerns now because we have a training session later today. We have to assess it after the training."

Ivan Vukomanovic is well aware of the ATK Mohun Bagan challenge. " ATK Mohun Bagan is one of the every year title contenders are one of the best teams in the league speaking budget-wise or the number of national team players they have. If you want to achieve something positive against this kind of team you have to be ready to defend, we've to be clinical in the attacking moments."

Talking about the availability of players for selection ahead of tomorrow's game, the Serbian assured that the team doesn't have any serious injury concerns. He said. "At the moment everybody's available. Ayush Adhikari had a minor discomfort but on the scanning report, it's nothing serious. If he's about to miss tomorrow's game, we will see medical staff. But nothing serious. We don't have serious injuries so far, everybody's available and is in a good condition."

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