Imphal: The 13th Hero I-League season has well and truly warmed up with some exciting games and fantastic goals already, something which Real Kashmir FC (RKFC) and hosts Tiddim Road Athletic Union FC (TRAU FC) will try and emulate at Imphal’s Khuman Lampak Stadium on Sunday,
Real Kashmir as well as debutants TRAU will hit the pitch in the quest of their first win of the league season. The visitors have had a couple of games at their home in Srinagar postponed due to inclement weather conditions and after a tight opener against mighty Quess East Bengal (QEB), here they came out with an all-important point even playing away, will be yearning for a game of competitive football.
Hosts TRAU on the other hand, have had the proverbial baptism by fire in their debut season, coming up against defending champions Chennai City FC and the two Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan and QEB in their first three games, all of which resulted in defeats. However, they would take heart from the fact that all three were away games they improved considerably against the Red & Golds in the last encounter.
Kashmir’s Scottish gaffer David Robertson summed up the mood in the visitors camp aptly when he said ahead of the game, “We are excited and ready to go. We are disappointed not to have played more but my team is hungry and ready to get playing again. Our preparation has been very good and with the long break, it gave us time to recover from injury and work on certain things. But overall we can’t wait to take the field.”
Nigerian attacker Princewill Emeka, the TRAU captain, did not deny in his pre-game chat however that the team is under pressure to deliver at home. He said, “The results need to change. We can’t afford to lose more points. We, as a team, know the situation exactly we are in now and everyone is motivated to turn things around. We can only do that by making sure we take three points from Sunday’s game.”
Kashmir’s beanpole striker from Ivory Coast, Gnohere Krizo, who has already opened his account in this league edition with a stunning strike against Quess East Bengal, and TRAU’s Brazilian front-man Marcel Sacramento, who has had an impressive spell in the Indonesian league before signing up for TRAU this season, will be among the key players to watch out for.HSB