Atletico de Kolkata coach Jose Molina blamed their woeful run at home this season in Indian Super League football partly to the new venue in Rabindra Sarovar Stadium which has failed to live to the ‘party-like’ atmosphere of the gigantic Saltlake.
Terming the Rabindra Sarovar Stadium atmosphere ‘sad’, he said: “Here the atmosphere feels a bit sad, and players are unable to bring up their best.
“It’s not like a party like we see in a place like Kochi.
Here it’s a little bit different. May be it’s one of the reasons, we could not win more matches here,” the Spaniard said.
“The only problem, I feel here is it does not seem full. That feel is missing here. It’s an open stadium without a shade. It becomes difficult with this stadium.”
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ATK have been forced to adopt the 12,000-odd capacity Rabindra Sarovar as their home venue with the unavailability of the Yuva Bharati Krirangan in Saltlake which is getting a facelift ahead of next year’s U-17 World Cup.
“I heard some of the former players, coaching staff saying Saltlake Stadium is a great atmosphere.”
Molina had a point if one compares the capacity of Rabindra Sarovar with that of Yuva Bharati Krirangan which in
the past had accommodated one lakh plus spectators.
Today’s attendance was 12,575, which is nowhere compared to the Yuva Bharati Krirangan which would witness on an average 30,000-plus crowd.
“I’m really grateful to the fans who come here. Clearly it’s not as grand as the Yuva Bharati Krirangan in Saltlake.” Molina said the venues in Kochi, Guwahati and Goa as the three best places this season.
“I find home venues of NorthEast, Kerala Blasters FC and Goa as three of the best places this time.”
From six home matches, ATK have managed to win a solitary win this time as they have failed to get past Kerala Blasters today to settle for a 1-1 draw.
“We played 13 matched but only two defeats. We play to win against any opposition on any pitch. We are in the semis, we have to happy. Not absolutely happy, but happy,” Molina said.
The former Spain goalkeeper also came out in support of Debjit Majumder whose blunder gifted Kerala an easy lead.
“For a goalkeeper, 95 percent of times you concede goal when you make a mistake. We did a mistake today. I’m sure he will try his best not to happen again. We have to know how to live with it,” he said.