Gallego returns to NorthEast squad in major boost for the club
Uruguayan midfielder Federico Gallego has been drafted into the NorthEast United FC squad for the remainder of Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20. The 29-year-old replaces fellow South American, Maximiliano Barreiro and will be hoping to hit the ground running right from the off as his side aim to reach the playoffs.
The attacking midfielder had been sidelined since he suffered a damaging injury in the second leg of NorthEast’s semi-final against Bengaluru FC last season. He underwent surgery at the start of March and has been undergoing rehabilitation ever since. Within few months though, the playmaker has stepped up his recovery, thereby leading to his inclusion in the Highlanders’ Hero ISL 2019-20 squad.
Gallego’s return will be welcomed by Robert Jarni and Co. given their overdependence on striker Asamoah Gyan. The Ghanaian has scored 50% of NorthEast’s goals so far this term, while Jarni’s side have only found the back of the net on eight occasions – the third worst tally in the division so far. The club are also winless since the start of November, which has led to them dropping out of the top four.
The midfielder’s presence will help ease some of those concerns, as he was quite potent in both halves last season. Despite playing in his first Hero ISL season, Gallego hit four goals and provided five assists last campaign. The 29-year-old was equally efficient with respect to his defensive duties, accounting for 58 tackles, 26 clearances and 21 blocks.