Lanzarote to captain ATK

KOLKATA: Spanish attacking midfielder Manuel Lanzarote will lead two-time Indian Super League champions ATK in the upcoming season, it was announced here Thursday.
The 34-year-old had an impressive last season with FC Goa, clocking well over 1500 minutes on the field with 13 goals and six assists to his name. Lanzarote will have Nigerian 35-year-old forward Kalu Uche and Brazilian 31-year-old striker Everton Santos in the attacking line-up.
ATK have retained 30-year-old English centre back John Johnson, who has a good understanding of Indian conditions having spent five seasons at Bengaluru FC before switching to ATK in 2017. In all, ATK have signed six new foreigners which also include Andre Bikey, who will be reuniting with coach Steve Coppell for the third time after playing under him at Reading and Jamshedpur FC. The 2014 and 2016 champions looked out of sorts in the last season, finishing ninth with 16 points FROM 18 games. But this season ATK have made their intentions clear by roping in Coppell, who guided Kerala Blasters to a runners-up finish in his first season, and took debutants Jamshedpur FC to a creditable fifth place finish in 2017.
“I am eagerly waiting for the start of the tournament. We have had a fruitful preseason in Spain where we got our chance to test all our players and now it is time to prove our mettle on the stage that matters,” Coppell said on the sidelines of the team’s jersey launch. (PTI)