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I-League: Gokulam Kerala FC, Neroca FC eye first win in Kozhikode

Gokulam Kerala FC and Neroca FC will look to notch their first win of their I-League campaign when they face off in Kozhikode on Saturday

football Updated: Dec 08, 2017 21:44 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, Kozhikode
I-League,Gokulam Kerala FC,Neroca FC
Gokulam Kerala drew their first home game in the I-League against Chennai City FC.(AIFF)

Neroca FC and Gokulam Kerala FC are eyeing to register their first win in the Hero I-League 2017-18 as they face off at the EMS Corporation Stadium in Kozhikode on Saturday.

Neroca FC, the second division league champions from Manipur, started their campaign with a defeat against Minerva Punjab while Gokulam lost their opening away match against Shillong Lajong and drew against Chennai City FC at home.

Gokulam are likely to introduce more Indian players as most of their foreigners are not fit. Their Syrian midfielder Khaled Al-Saleh would be the player to watch out. Kerala player Irshad, who missed their first home match, would return to the matchday squad.

“This is our second home match and we should win it. Three points are a must from this match. The players are confident and they have assured that they would grab all the points,” said Bino George, the coach of the Gokulam FC.

“I watched their opening match and though they lost, they played really well. They are a well-prepared side. I think it would be a good match,” he said.

Gift Raikhan, the coach of Neroca FC, said that the match would be a clash of different styles.

“We play in a different style. We have not clinched any points so far and the match is a crucial one for us. Every point is counted. Our side is a good one and we have worked on our mistakes from the first match. This would be a good encounter,” he said.

“This is the first time we are in the I-League and this is a big moment for club and players. So hopefully we will open our account tomorrow,” he said.

Their Nigerian forward Felix Chidi is the man to watch out. The striker scored their only goal in the previous match and was also the top-scorer in the Second Division League with nine goals.

The main strength of the team is that they have retained most of their players, who have helped them to win the I- League second division. Their attacking lineup is strong and their defence is manned by Indian international Gouramangi Singh.

First Published: Dec 08, 2017 21:44 IST