Hume keeping fingers crossed for ATK triumph
Iain Hume will be looking to win his first Hero ISL trophy when Atlético de Kolkata take the field against Kerala Blasters FC in the final of the 2016 Hero Indian Super League at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi on Sunday evening. The last time these two teams featured in a final together – in Hero ISL 2014 - Hume had ‘Kerala Blasters FC’ written across his jersey in a 1-0 loss at Navi Mumbai’s DY Patil Stadium. Be that as it may, the Canadian striker this time is determined to check the Hero ISL trophy off his bucket list. Ahead of the grand finale, Hume, who has scored seven goals for ATK this season, spoke to indiansuperleague.com in an exclusive interview. Here are the excerpts.
The stadium is sold-out for tomorrow’s game, so what are your thoughts on the venue and how have the preparations been?
Did you expect anything different? Everybody knows the fans here in Kochi are unbelievable and the atmosphere they generate is second to none, and it is something we are looking forward to. The Kolkata players will all be here and soaking up the atmosphere and I know they [home fans] will probably be there before we get there and I know we will be walking into the cauldron but that’s what we play the game for, to play in venues and atmospheres like this.
You played for Kerala in Hero ISL 2014, so what’s going in your head right now ahead of this game against your former team?
You always want to play against teams that you have played for before and as much as you don’t want to score against them, you want to score against them and when it comes to the final, loyalties are out of the window and I love the place and the people here but I am a Kolkata player now and I love it at Kolkata too, and we have got a chance to win a trophy and if I am playing and if I get chances to score goals, I hope, fingers crossed, I will be on the right side of the score line tomorrow night.
You have completed three seasons now in the Hero ISL, so what are your thoughts on the league and how has its progression been?
Massive. The start of the ISL, it was a little bit cagey where teams were trying to outscore each other and last season was somewhat the same but this season I think teams have been a little bit more wary of conceding goals and they have improved their teams mainly defensively with a little bit of attacking flair. People will grumble about the lack of goals in comparison with the first two years but if they are football fans, then this season they will know that the league has improved and especially the Indian players have improved in leaps and bounds and one of the main reasons of the league was to improve the standard of Indian football and anyone who watches the league can see that the standard has improved and in the years to come, it will help the younger ones coming through and also help the national team.