Nigerian forward Kalu Uche has been sidelined for up to six weeks after he sustained a grade three quadricep tear in ATK’s 1-2 loss at the hands of Bengaluru FC days ago.
Coach Steve Compell admitted the fact that this would leave a “big hole” in the side adding that the striker would undergo treatment in Barcelona with ATK in the lookout for a replacement.
“He had an extensive tear in his quadriceps muscles. It is grade three which is quite bad. We expect Kalu to be fit around Christmas so we are really looking for a player to fill in for what could be five games after this game,” said Coppell before his team’s match against FC Pune City.
“We got league approval only last night so we could not get anyone in for this match. He obviously leaves a big hole in our squad. We have requested the ISL whether we can replace him in the short time.
“They have said yes we can but that creates problems in itself because trying to find someone for a short period of time is very difficult. We have sent feelers out for replacements.”
Uche found the net just once in his past five outings for ATK this season and was brought down by Bengaluru’s Albert Serran in the 31st minute, which led to the injury.
With a draw and two victories in their kitty, the two-time champions currently are placed seventh in the points table.
ATK got off to a classy start with youngster Komal Thatal putting the hosts in front with a beautiful finish.
But they conceded two back-to-back goals before the after the interval as the team succumbed to a 1-2 loss at the Salt Lake Stadium.
They would hope to make amends and get their campaign back on track when they face FC Pune City on Saturday at home.
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