Defending Indian Super League (ISL) champions ATK recorded their third win in the last five games courtesy a wonderful strike from Portuguese winger Zequinha in the second half over NorthEast United FC in Guwahati on Friday.
"It was another difficult game. NorthEast were having a tough time but we still had to come here and win. (We are) pleased with the way we played, we kept probing and I was delighted when we got the goal and what a special goal it was," claimed ATK boss Teddy Sheringham after the 1-0 result.
He took time out to praise 20-year-old playmaker Hitesh Sharma who performed brilliantly. He said, "Hitesh is playing in a really difficult position, just off the frontman. He tries, learns and listens and is a great little lad. As long as he listens, I will be there to coach him. I have a lot of experience playing in that position and only when you are old - 27, 28 that you get to learn about that position but he is a great lad and will get better," said the former Stevenage manager.
Star striker Robbie Keane did not travel to the Assam capital as he was suffering from an ankle injury. "He got kicked on it and got twisted at the same time in Bengaluru. We are assessing his injury as we speak," Sheringham provided an update.
The former Manchester United striker was happy with the cool weather in Guwahati and hailed the playing conditions. "Perfect conditions for footballers to play football. Nice bit of dew to make it zip across the surface, no complains whatsoever - perfect surface."
After a winless first month of the season, ATK are now up to the sixth spot with 12 points in their kitty and trail fourth-placed FC Goa by four points with Mumbai City FC in between with 14 points.
As the ISL season four reached the halfway mark, the 51-year-old seemed happy with the way things were going and turned his focus on their next game - away to FC Pune City on January 20.
"We took the game to NorthEast United. We got another big game away from home, our seventh from 10 games and now is not a worse position to be in after that start. We will do our homework after having played them once and will look forward to the game," he signed off.