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ISL 2017: NorthEast United FC results in pre-season

4:35 am AEDT 12/11/17
NorthEast United FC ISL 2017 Preseason
As the Highlanders ready themselves for the fourth edition of the ISL, we look at their pre-season results till date...

With the fourth edition of the Indian Super League (ISL) rolling into town on 17 November, the various franchises have been busy fine-tuning their preparations for the league with pre-season friendly ties.

Guwahati-based outfit NorthEast United FC appointed Portuguese coach João Carlos Pires de Deus ahead of the upcoming edition after his compatriot Nelo Vingada left for the Malaysian men's senior national team job in the summer.

The John Abraham co-owned side started their pre-season training camp in Imphal from the last week of September and returned to Guwahati on 6 October.

The team, bolstered by the return of India internationals Rowllin Borges and Halicharan Narzary beat Shillong United FC, formerly known as Royal Wahingdoh of Meghalahys 6-0 in their first friendly. Cape Verde international Odair Fortes and Seminlen Dongel registered braces as Sushil Meetei and Narzary also scored.

They travelled back to the Manipur capital city to play NEROCA FC, with whom they signed a five-year strategic alliance agreement for grassroots development in the region, in their first pre-season friendly.

NorthEast United Pre-season in India
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 14 October Shillong United FC 6-0 Won
2 22 October NEROCA FC 0-2 Won

Second half goals from Danilo (57') and Sushil Meetei (89') secured a victory for NEUFC in a packed Khuman Lampak Stadium in a 2 PM kickoff. Subsequently, the team embarked on a tour of Turkey, setting up camp in the coastal city of Antalya.

NorthEast United Pre-season in Turkey
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 27 October Al-Kahraba [IRQ] 1-0 Lost
2 31 October Al-Naft SC [IRQ] 1-1 Draw
3 2 November Naft Al-Janoob SC [IRQ] 1-2 Won
4 5 November Al-Najaf FC [IRQ] 1-0 Lost
5 7 November Naft Al-Janoob SC [IRQ] 2-2 Draw
6 9 November Alanyaspor [TUR] 0-0 Draw

NorthEast United set up friendlies against Iraqi Premier League sides with their season beginning on 20 November. They lost the first by a goal but former Hapoel Tel Aviv striker Danilo's goal against Al-Naft ensured a draw for the Highlanders in the second.

India international Halicharan Narzary departed for the national camp as Rowllin Borges was sidelined with an injury. Former Corinthians playmaker Marcinho scored twice and TP Rehenesh saved a spot-kick to earn their first win in Turkey. Al-Najaf beat them by the slightest of margins in a rain-marred contest. 

They faced Naft Al-Janoob once again as they rallied to hold the Iraqi side 2-2 with Colombian striker Luis Paez and Danilo on the scoresheet. The pre-season rounded off with a goalless stalemate against Turkish Super Lig side Alanyaspor.

The Highlanders start their season four campaign by welcoming debutants Jamshedpur FC at the refurbished Indira Gandhi Atheltic Stadium in Guwahati on 18 October.