The goalkeeper was the outstanding performer on the night as the reigning champions avoided a bottom place finish.
The bottom dwellers faced each other and the reigning champions ATK ended their season on a high. Both ATK and NorthEast United have had an underwhelming campaign and the 2-time winners salvaged some pride from their last home game. Whereas Avram Grant’s men need to figure out a lot of things before they get prepared for the Super Cup qualifiers.
So Khel Now analyses the performances of the Indian players who featured in this encounter.
Soram Poirei– 8.0
Soram conceded five goals in his last match against FC Goa and it was a good transition for the goalkeeper as he managed to keep a clean-sheet. Soram made a flurry of saves and also even denied players a couple of times in one-on-one situations. He had a good game and this match will boost his confidence as the team have struggled to keep a clean-sheet.
Soram made a fantastic save from the corner.
Keegan Pereira– 7.0
Keegan also had a decent game in defence and hardly allowed the NorthEast Wingers any space to work with. The defence worked well as in the latter half of the match NorthEast kept pushing forward in search of goals. Keegan made some crucial interceptions and defensive blocks and also made some forward runs.
Anwar Ali– 6.0
Anwar had an average game AS he was not as good as the other defenders. The 31-year gave away possession in crucial areas which in turn was piling up the pressure for their backline. Anwar was also out of position at times and did okay in aerial duels. He still seems like the weak-link in the ATK defence which has struggled throughout the season.
Ashutosh Mehta– 6.5
A lot better performance than the last outing against FC Goa. Ashutosh was defensively sound up against the pacy Halicharan Narzary and he did a commendable job. The Mumbai lad is still nowhere near his best but this was a certain improvement from the last one.
Shankar Sampingiraj– 6.0
Just like the others he also had a decent game, but he also gave away possession a lot of times and could not bring the attacking shift in the counters. Narzary and Rowlin Borges gave him a tough time in midfield and he was second best in that battle. He was subbed off in the 60th minute for the more energetic Hitesh Sharma.
Jayesh Rane– 6.0
Jayesh has had a season to forget. After last season’s success with Aizawl FC a lot was expected from him but sadly his performances were below expectations. He again had an average outing, where sometimes he showed glimpses of his old self but most of the time he had very less impact in the match.
Hitesh Sharma– 5.0
The energetic midfielder from Mumbai was brought on for Shankar to have a more attacking shift to their play and to help Mbatha on the counter-attacking runs. Hitesh was pretty decent considering the amount of time he was there.
Robin Singh– NA
Robin Singh came on for Zequinha in the 81st minute. In the dying moments of the match, ATK defended with all their might and Robin hardly got any chance to make an impact.
Rupert Nongrum– NA
Rupert came on for Mbatha late in the 88th minute and it was just for the team to have a breather as they were trying to hold on to their lead.
TP Rehenesh– 6.0
Rehenesh hardly had anything to do. Some saves here and there that’s it. He was awestruck with Conor Thomas’ pass and Robbie Keane’s sublime finish and he hardly could do anything to stop it. The Kerala-born goalkeeper has had an underwhelming season with NorthEast and will hope things improve in the Super Cup for them.
Nirmal Chettri– 6.0
Nirmal Chettri had an average game as he kept Jayesh Rane quiet for most of the time. Chettri even made some good overlapping runs and linked up well with the midfielders at times. Although, he was pushing forward for goals he left the defence vacant and Mbatha almost managed to capitalise on it. Chettri also had a golden opportunity to score a goal, but he headed the ball wide off the goal from very close range.
Reagan Singh– 6.5
Reagan made some useful runs through the flanks and linked up well with the likes of Narzary and Mosquera. He also made some dangerous crosses into the box which created confusion in the ATK box. He and Narzary linked up well and were really posing a threat to the defenders from the left flank.
Malemngamba Meitei– 5.5
Meitei struggled throughout the first half and always came second best when he went up against Keegan Pereira. hE was not able to inject the pace or creativity required in the Highlanders’ play to open up ATk’s defence. He was subbed off for Lalrindika Ralte in the 54th minute.
ATK vs Northeast United – Match Highlights
Rowlin Borges– 6.5
Rowlin Borges had a decent match, won back possession a lot of timeS. He used his physicality to good effect and dominated the midfield in the SECOND half. He started a lot of attacks fOR NorthEast and was a stalwart in midfield. Rowlin linked well with his midfielders Narzary and Ralte in the second half as the visitors were dictating possession and were pushing forward for an equaliser.
Holicharan Narzary– 7.0
The young India regular had a decent outing. He showed his pace a lot of times and dribbled past defenders with ease. He was linking well with the midfield and created a lot of chances for the forwards which went in vain. He also showed determination when Mbatha was making run on the counter, the defence was nowhere and Narzary showed his pace and closed the angle, as the shot went wide. He was definitely the bright spark for NEUFC.
Lalrindika Ralte– 5.5
Ralte came on for Meitei in the 54th minute and had an immediate impact on play. He was swift with his dribbles and created some chances for the forwards. He had a tricky encounter with Pereira at times. With his arrival, there was definitely a change in attacking tempo for NEUFC.