Jarni: Have to learn from this result and come back stronger

NorthEast United FC's unbeaten start to the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 finally came to an end as they suffered a 3-0 loss against ATK FC at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati on Saturday. David Williams scored the opener and Roy Krishna bagged a brace to help the visitors to the victory. An early injury to Asamoh Gyan also didn’t help the Highlanders’ cause.

At the post-match press conference, NorthEast head coach Robert Jarni admitted that his team was the second-best on the night and said, “I am not disappointed. It was better to lose today 3-0 rather than losing the next three matches 1-0. We must learn from this game and come back stronger.”

“Yes, ATK had a lot of chances. They could have scored more. As I said before, today just wasn’t our day,” the Croat added.

Asked if Gyan’s early departure from the field was a handicap for the team, Jarni opined, “It made a big difference. He had an early chance and almost scored. We have to see what happened. I hope his injury isn’t a long term one.”

Speaking about his plans to cope with a lengthy injury layoff to Gyan if it comes to that, the veteran coach replied, “Yes, Gyan is important for us but we have many players. I hope he can play the next game but we have other players too. We have 25 players in the squad.”

When suggested that his team was somewhat overwhelmed by the quality of ATK’s attack, particularly Krishna and Williams, Jarni stated, “For me, my players are the best. ATK do have two very good strikers who are fast. However, in the last twenty minutes we had them on the backfoot but they defended pretty well.”

Despite playing against an attacking ATK side, Jarni opted to field one foreign centre-back in Kai Heerings, with Mislav Komorski was left on the bench. Enquired if he thought it was the right decision, the World Cup bronze medalist noted, “That was my choice. But that was not a problem tonight. The issue was that we made some mistakes, some big ones and got punished for them.”

Read the Match Report here.

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