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ISL 2017-18: ATK's Ashley Westwood cites injuries as cause of Jamshedpur defeat

17:44 GMT 28/01/2018
Ashley Westwood Steve Coppell ATK Jamshedpur FC ISL 4 2017/2018
The ATK interim boss said that injuries to key players had played their part in the 1-0 loss against Jamshedpur FC......

Defending champions ATK’s slim top-four chances were dealt a big blow after they were overturned 1-0 by Jamshedpur FC at Kolkata on Sunday.

Interim manager Ashley Westwood could only bemoan the several injuries to his side in the post match press conference.

With several stars on the injured list, the Kolkata side could field only four foreigners in the loss and this fact was not lost on Westwood.

“We had four foreigners today. Indian boys were injured too.  The team is weak due to do many injuries. Robbie (Keane) is injured and he is our main goal scorer. Lyngdoh (Eugeneson) our best Indian player is also injured. No excuses. We will keep trying and work hard till we find a solution,” the Englishman explained.

The defending champions currently find themselves in a lowly eighth spot with just 12 points from as many games and Westwood opined that his side would have to win their remaining six encounters to have any chance of making the top-four.

“It looks tough (making top-four). We need five or six wins to qualify. We have so many injuries. We will get back several other players next match. I hope we make an impact next game,” Westwood stated.

The ATK interim boss also gave an update on star-striker Robbie Keane’s injury.

“Robbie came back today. He will start training tomorrow,” the tactician said.

India U-17 World Cup star Komal Thatal was given his maiden appearance in the league during the dying minutes, becoming the youngest player to do so in the process. Westwood took the youngster’s cameo as one of the positives in a losing cause.

“We had some goal scoring chances today. We created chances. We gave Komal a start. (That’s) Positive for the club,” he said before signing off.