ISL: Table-toppers Atletico blame hectic schedule for 1-1 draw with Kerala

Kolkata: Atletico de Kolkata blamed the hectic schedule for their successive draws at home as the table leaders settled for a 1-1 result against bottom placed Kerala Blasters FC in their ISL fixture yesterday.

Kerala Blasters' Raphael Romey rises to head the ball before Atletico de Kolkata's Joffre Gonzalez. Pic/ISL/Sportzpics
Kerala Blasters' Raphael Romey rises to head the ball before Atletico de Kolkata's Joffre Gonzalez. Pic/ISL/Sportzpics 

"If you analyse the points we lost at home, we played at home after a long travel. There was about 48 hours to adjust after the long travel. Even then we are on top of the table with 11 points and doing very well," ATK assistant coach Angel Diaz Barrachina told reporters after the match.

The home team managed the show in absence of their marquee manager Antonio Habas and goalkeeping coach Pradipkumar Bhaktawer as the duo have been suspended by the disciplinary committee.

ATK also missed their marquee player Luis Garcia (hamstring injury), mercurial striker Fikru Teferra, who too has been suspended by the AIFF disciplinary committee.

The assistant coach
however looked forward to the nine-day break before their next away fixture on November 4 against Chennaiyin FC.

"We had to deal with many things during the last few days. We played on Thursday, we had a long travel from Goa and got in Kolkata late in night.

We missed some players because of suspension and some due to injuries. We had to deal with many things. Now we have to adapt for the nine days and hope to recover," he added.

Atletico maintained their top position in the league table with 11 points from five games while Blasters earned their first point in third game.

Baljit Sahni gave ATK the lead in the 22nd minute with a powerful angular right-footer beating David James' outstretched hands.

Atletico then missed a couple of scoring opportunities before their opponents restored parity. KBFC's Iain Hume came up with a smart finish to beat a surging Subhasish Roy Chowdhury (41st min).

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