The Highlanders need a win against Kolkata after having lost four games on the bounce…

Despite four successive defeats, NorthEast United FC head coach Nelo Vingada believes his players can turn their Indian Super League campaign around when they take on Atlético de Kolkata at the Rabindra Sarobar Stadium in Kolkata on Thursday evening. With just one point from their last five games, the Highlanders find themselves in a difficult situation in the bottom half of the table. However, their cause is not entirely lost and they can get back in playoffs contention with a win.

“Tomorrow is another game, our beginning was fantastic but the last four losses have put us in a difficult situation. In life and in football, we have seen that nothing is impossible. No one has qualified and no one is out yet. It will be hard but nothing is impossible. We can overcome this situation. We made some important mistakes which cost us the results and we should have had more points than we have right now,” Vingada, whose side has 10 points from nine games, told reporters on Wednesday.

“We can show tomorrow that we are here to fight to overcome the situation and we still have a chance to qualify. In their last game, Kolkata played very well against Delhi and they were superior. Tomorrow will be a crucial game for us and we hope for a positive result and we will be out on the pitch to win.”

“You know when you are working with a team, you have a strategy and we have a set team but with injuries we need to change the team and also one or two times we needed to change the way we were playing… I assume the responsibility of everything happening with the team and the results, but sometimes some things that happen during the game can destroy the plan. So now we are working more on the mental plan than the technical plan. I believe tomorrow we have more options as we have some injured players back and even [Emiliano] Alfaro is back [from a suspension due to yellow card accumulation].”

When asked in light of their performance of late how he was keeping the players motivated, the 63-year-old Portuguese said: “So you know in football what people remember is the result, the good or bad performance after the result but our defeats were in situations where we had normal or good performances as you can see in Goa we played a good game… Now we need to be reborn for the situation and the matches with the same attitude we had in the first few games, so this is the same team which won in the beginning against good opponents. In the games we won, we did make mistakes and in the games we lost we made crucial mistakes. Now we don’t have many games to spare, so we have to play for results and we have to win the games.”

“We have conceded eight goals and its fine but the problem is we are missing many chances, so if we see the reports of the games we can see that our team has created many chances but has not been able to convert and that has become a major problem,” Vingada signed off commenting on his defensive errors in the last few games.

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Report by Khel Now Correspondent Kushankur Rony Rakshit. Sports passionate and content writer. He is big football and cricket fan.