Ferran Corominas had a brilliant 2017-18 Indian Super League season playing alongside Manuel Lanzarote for FC Goa but on Wednesday, the two players will be pitted against each other as ATK host Sergio Lobera's Gaurs in Kolkata.
Goa have enjoyed a splendid start to the season after they managed to retain most of their squad from last season. One of the most important retentions of the lot was goal machine Corominas.
Head coach Sergio Lobera said, "I think Coro was the best player in the team last season. We were very lucky to be able to keep him in the team after getting many offers from other clubs. He’s a great player and does a lot of things on and off the pitch which helps us to motivate the players.
FC Goa are second on the league table with 16 points from eight matches. ATK trail Goa by five points having played the same number of games and are sixth on the table.
"I think ATK’s a team which seems like they’re obliged to win the game. We’re more excited to win games. The team they’ve built is like they’ve chosen the best international and Indian players from the country to become champions.
"Keeping that in mind, tomorrow (Wednesday) we’ll be hoping to get one past them. We recognize the potential they have. They’re a direct rival for us and we want to keep a gap between us and themselves."
Goa's defence has come under the scanner once again. Only Pune City and Chennaiyin have conceded more goals than the Gaurs this season.
"What worries me most is to win the games. To do that, we need to score more goals than the other team. If we do that I’m happy.
"The second thing I liked is that the difference in goals scored and goals against. I think it’s very important for a side to have a superior goal difference at the end of the season. I’m the coach and it’s my job to improve every aspect possible and we’re trying to improve our defensive side."
He added, "I think every team is where they deserve to be right now. Ultimately what happens on the pitch is the merit of what you do throughout the season. For us, we’re taking every game at one time. That’s why it’s very important for us to win this game."
Lobera also warned that his team is not all about Corominas' goals. "Do you remember how Coro scored against Delhi in two games in a row? It’s normal. A striker is there to score the goals and the goalies are there to stop the goal.
"Ultimately it is true that he’s important for us, but if you see the rankings, there are other goal-scorers in the top charts for us as well. If you see accordingly our centre-backs have more goals than some of the strikers in the league."