Defending champions ATK’s dismal season in the Indian Super League continued with a 1-2 loss to Chennaiyin FC at Kolkata on Thursday.
Interin manager Ashley Westwood’s first game in charge after the sacking of Teddy Sheringham did not go as planned and the Englishman said that a point would have been a fair result on the night.
“Scoring before half-time to take a 1-0 lead, you don’t expect to concede two goals in the second half. I thought we fought really hard and showed a lot of desire and commitment. You feel disappointed and I thought we deserved from the match. I think a draw would have been a fair result. We matched Chennaiyin but we were unfortunate that we made a couple of mistakes to concede two goals,” he said at the post-match press conference.
ATK custodian Debjit Majumdar had been at fault for Mailson Alves’ equalizer but Westwood refused to point the finger at any individual player.
“I don’t want to point fingers at players. No we win as a team and lose as a team. We conceded from a set-piece and that is something we have talked about and worked on. That was the key as it made it 1-1. If we could have kept it at 1-0 for a little while longer then it would have been easier to prevent the second goal,” he said.
“It looked like the referee was going to give a handball so there was a little bit lapse of concentration but at the end of the day we win and lose as a team,” Westwood added.
Zequinha was not available for the match due to an injury and the ATK interim coach said that the winger could be out for four-to-six weeks.
“Zequinha has got a hamstring injury while sprinting. He has got some soft tissue damage and with the severity of it our estimate says he could be out for four to six weeks. If he is lucky maybe three weeks but with the games coming thick and fast, this is a bad time for him to get injured,” he explained.
Westwood refused to rule out a top-four finish in the league despite lying in a lowly eighth position currently.
“With five home games we were never going to win all five. We spoke about winning four possible three with a draw to keep us in the mix. Obviously we are disappointed with the loss but we showed a lot of improvement, intensity and desire. Forget that we have lost three points, at the end of the day we have shown some improvement and that is encouraging,” he said before signing off.