Hyderabad: Two matches into the Indian Super League. Hyderabad Football Club appeared battered and bruised. After the first game at home, they’re full of beans.
Understandably, after talismanic Brazilian Marcelo turned their fortunes around with a jaw-dropping freekick that sank into the Kerala net and soared host spirits in a come-from behind 2-1 win.
On Wednesday, manger Phil Brown will look to a similar show from his boys as they take on nippy NorthEast United in the second game at the Gachibowli Stadium, a venue where they found frenzied fans, with whom the team want to build a relationship via powerful performances on the field.
A second win will even out the two losses but Brown still does not have a full squad to choose from — Bobo, Rafael Gomez and Giles Barnes are injured and Nestor Gordillo is serving a ban. “I don’t think we have moved past all the injuries, there are four big players still injured but we will focus on what we have,” he said.
NorthEast have a big one in their ranks — World Cupper Asamoah Gyan of Ghana. “We know we are up against a very strong team that has Gyan who is capable of winning a game on his own but we have a team which has character,” said Brown.
NorthEast manager Robert Jarni is cautious. “You never know how they (Hyderabad) are going to play. They won the last game, are full of confidence,” he said.
NorthEast United are unbeaten in three matches and sit fourth on the table while Hyderabad are ninth with a lone win in three... but they know it’s a new game.