KOLKATA, Nov 21 - Leaders FC Goa were denied the mandatory practice time at the match venue of the Hero ISL-2 game on the eve of their 11th round match against hosts Atletico de Kolkata. Instead the visiting team was sent to the far away Mohun Bagan AC ground in Maidan on Saturday which forced coach Zico slam the �poor practice facilities.� The Brazilian said he thought of boycotting the pre-match media interaction but decided against it to honour the presence of the media contingent.
�The hosts should provide us with a suitable place to practice. If you were in Goa it was not like that. We respect our opponents and even if we didn�t train at the pitch in Fatorda, we would let our rivals train at the venue. The hosts haven�t respected the rules of the ISL. I thought about not coming here (press conference), but decided to turn up out of respect for you,� Zico thundered.
According to the ISL rules, visiting teams are entitled to get a 45-minute training session at the match venue on the eve of the game. The hosts, too, haven�t been training there to preserve the newly-laid pitch, doing there sessions at Bidhannagar Municipal Ground instead.
Goa, riding on the back of 7-0 thrashing of Mumbai City FC, will start the favourites and a victory will put the team firmly on way to the knockout stage. ATK too are looking to not only stop the in-form FC Goa�s victory run but also try and steal a march over the famed rivals with a win.