ISL 2018-19: Steve Coppell - Pune City made life difficult for us

ATK boss Steve Coppell was disappointed not to get three points in this crucial juncture of the season…

ATK further complicated their journey to the play-offs of Indian Super League (ISL) season five after managing a 2-2 draw against FC Pune City on Sunday.

The Kolkata based club failed to hold on to their lead against Pune and dropped vital two points.

Speaking about the match, ATK boss Steve Coppell said, “When we got 2-1 up I thought yes (we are getting the three points). But, to be fair to Pune, they have won the last 3 games. They threw men forward and made life difficult for us. We gave away a few silly free kicks around the box and just too many set pieces in the end and we pay the price for that.

"For spells, we controlled the game. In many ways, it was a good performance. If it would have been the first 2 or 3 games of the season, then we would have been happy. But, in a position where we need three points, we are disappointed.”

Pronay Halder suffered an ankle injury and had to be substituted. On Pronay’s injury, Coppell said, “As soon as he did it, I thought he was in trouble because it was straight on the ankle. It was such a quick tackle and he is important to us. We will have to see tomorrow morning. We only have four days in between our next game, his old team Goa. So, we hope he can recover very quickly for that. 

“A win today would have been great for us. If we win three games, we will be in the playoffs. Do I think we can win the 3 games? Yes, of course, we can. Three tough games, we have got Goa and then Mumbai. If we deserve to be in the playoffs, then we have to do well against these teams in particular.”

Praising midfielder Eugeneson Lyngdoh, the ATK boss said, “He had a really bad injury (ACL tear) last season. I haven't used him much, to be honest. He is in a competitive midfield. But, today when he came on a wonderful pass to Jayesh and a shot from distance. You will know he will give his all. He might get his opportunity when we play Goa next.”