“We should not take this match lightly, we must fight” – Khalid Jamil

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Northeast United will play their 20th fixture of the ongoing season against Kerala Blasters, a fixture that will arguably be the most important one.

Ahead of the game, Coaches Alison Kharsyntiew and Khalid Jamil addressed the Media and here’s what they had to say.

Coach Khalid was asked about his thoughts on their opponents Kerala Blasters. “They are a good team. They have good talents players, foreigners are also good and they are a quality team. So, we have to prepare as it will be a tough game. We should not take this match lightly, we must fight,” he said.

Credit: NEUFC Twitter

When asked about if there’s a room for complecancy as the Highlanders need just one point to secure themselves a play-off berth, Coach Khalid said, “We are not thinking about anything else and the preparation is same. We just need to go there, give our best and they are good team, so we have to be ready in all aspects,”

Credit: NEUFC Twitter

Jordan Murray and Garry Hooper are always a threat, on being asked about if there are special plans for duo, the 43 year old stated, “As I said they have good talented players, all the foreigners are good. Definitely we will be prepared for them, we have to fight as all Indian boys are also good. So, we have to be prepared for everyone,”

Ever since taking over the hot seat back in January, Khalid Jamil has changed Northeast United’s fortunes. When asked about if more Indian coaches should be appointed as the head coaches of ISL teams, he said, “Everybody must get a chance and it is upto the club owners about how they feel,”

Khalid Jamil won the I-league with Aizawl against all odds when asked about if there are any similarities between between both the projects (Aizawl FC & Northeast United FC), he said, “It is a big challenge here. We are dealing with good teams in the ISL, they have more quality players, coaches also. Tomorrow’s game also is like that. So, it is a different challenge,”

Credit: NEUFC Twitter

The Highlanders’ Ghanaian striker Kwesi Appiah was ruled out due to an injury and Jamaican international Deshorn Brown was handed the responsibility of the frontline and has not disappointed. Coach Khalid expressed his views on Deshorn’s introduction. “After the introduction of Brown, everybody is feeling good because he is one of the quality strikers. It is our pleasure to be with him. He is a nice player and a good striker. It is an advantage for us,” he added.

Credit: NEUFC Twitter

Federico Gallego missed Northeast United’s last two matches owing to an injury and Imran Khan was introduced into the starting XI to replace the Uruguayan. Expressing his views on Imran’s development, Coach Khalid said, “He came and played last two matches. Scored one goal and one assist in the last game when he played in his natural position. So, if we give him more chances, he will be a vital player for us,” and he signed off.

Credit: NEUFC Twitter

Ashutosh Mehta missed out on the matchday squad against East Bengal, giving us an update on whether he will feature in the matchday squad against Kerala Blasters, the 34 year old said, “There’s a bit improvement in him and about that coach hasn’t decided yet,”

Alison Kharsyntiew and Khalid Jamil could become the first Indian coach duo to lead an ISL side to the play-offs if the result falls in their favour tomorrow. Citing his views on his, Coach Alison said, “It will be good if we win tomorrow and we are confident that the players will do well. They have done very well in the last game and hopefully it will continue tomorrow. It will be a big achievement for all of us, the team, the club as a whole,” and he signed off.

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