Hyderabad FC will look to gain some momentum when it faces NorthEast United FC in its Indian Super League (ISL) encounter at the GMC Balayogi Athletic Stadium here on Wednesday.
However, his task is unenviable, given the fact that key players are still missing due to injuries and suspensions. The likes of Bobo, Rafael Gomez and Giles Barnes are all injured, while Nestor Gordillo is serving a ban.
“Four big players remain injured. What we tend to do is focus on what we have. We have focused on the players that are available to us. That has been the most important thing,” said Brown. The bright spot for HFC will be the form of Marcelinho. The Brazilian forward struck a brilliant free-kick winner against Kerala and scored a goal in his team’s 1-3 defeat to Jamshedpur FC.
He will be Hyderabad’s talisman once again, against a solid NEUFC. The Highlanders’ potent attack, led by the irrepressible Asamoah Gyan and Martin Chaves, will pose a huge threat to a fragile Hyderabad defence, which is yet to keep a clean sheet. Youngster Redeem Tlang has also impressed and adds to the guile and pace of NorthEast’s attack.
“We know we are coming up against a very strong side. NEUFC is very organised defensively. It has Gyan, who is capable of winning a game on his own. But we have a team which has character,” said Brown. NorthEast is undefeated in three matches so far.
Though it has only one win, its two draws have come against quality oppositions in Bengaluru FC and FC Goa. In fact, Robert Jarni’s outfit will count itself unlucky not to have obtained all three points against Goa, having conceded a late stoppage-time equaliser.
“You never know how it (Hyderabad) is going to play. It won the last game, it is full of confidence and we have to be prepared. We are confident because we are still unbeaten, we have already played against the big teams. (However), it will be a tough away fixture,” said Jarni.
While NorthEast could be considered favourite for the clash, Hyderabad has shown it can pack a punch.