I-League 2017-18: Gokulam Kerala FC eye winning start to life in top flight away to Shillong Lajong
Shillong Lajong face an unknown quantity in Gokulam Kerela FC when the two sides take on each other in their season opening match of the I-League in Shillong on Monday.
Shillong: Shillong Lajong face an unknown quantity in Gokulam Kerala FC when the two sides take on each other in their season opening match of the I-League in Shillong on Monday.
Shillong Lajong have been in the I-League for some time while Gokulam are the first club from Kerala taking part in this top tier after a hiatus of six years.
Home side assistant coach Alison Kharsyntiew said the first match of any league would be hard and Shillong Lajong will give their best.
"They (Gokulam) are a good team, George is a good coach, and we have to be mentally prepared for them," said Alison.
"There is one thing evident, that this match is going to be a really competitive and energetic one and also that the viewers will always be biting their nails in anticipation of miracles the players do on the field."
He said Gokulam would give their hundred per cent since they would be playing their first match.
Alison said his players have been trained to be able to work in defence as well as in offence.
"My advice to the players is that play as a unit and give it all you have," he said.
Talking about team coordination, he said the senior and junior players got along well as it was a key aspect to any team's performance
"The senior players guide the juniors and it is also expected of the juniors to be respectful towards their seniors," he said.
The 25-year-old Gray joins from Bayer Leverkusen, where he had been on loan from Leicester. The contract, till June 2024, includes the option for a fourth year.
The 28-year-old is the club's sixth signing of the summer, and joins the side ahead of their AFC Cup playoff clash against Eagles FC.
A statement issued on behalf of Premier League players said: "We feel now, more than ever, it is important for us to continue to take the knee as a symbol of our unity against all forms of racism.