East Bengal out to end winless run at home

Kingfisher East Bengal (currently fourth) and Indian Arrows (currently eighth) can rise a place above with a win.

Kingfisher East Bengal players train ahead of Sunday's match.   -  SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Kingfisher East Bengal will look to recreate its winning formula after being winless for four Hero I-League games when it hosts Indian Arrows at the Vidyasagar Krirangan (Barasat Stadium) on Sunday (February).

The Khalid Jamil-led side risks falling out of top four if it doesn't obtain a positive result against an Indian Arrows side which is winless in three games themselves.

Read: Chennai City, Aizawl share spoils

Incidentally, East Bengal's last win in the league came against Arrows when two early first-half strikes sealed three points in the away fixture on January 2. Three stalemates and a derby defeat to arch-rival later, Jamil's men are desperate for three points now.

The second half fightback against table topper Minerva Punjab in its last match will give the home side a huge confidence boost coming into the game. 

Head coach Khalid Jamil, on the eve of the game, commented, "We did not go down easily in the last match. We scored two and we have to fight similarly in this match. They (Indian Arrows) are playing well. We have to play a good brand of football."

"We must think about our game. It doesn't matter where the match is, our work is to play, no matter where. There is pressure. We have six more games to prove ourselves. We have to rectify our mistakes and move on."

Kingfisher East Bengal has twenty points in its kitty and is fourth after Mohun Bagan beat Lajong tonight. Meanwhile, Mahmoud Al Amna is slated to come back from injury while Armand Bazie has been released from the squad.

All India Football Federation's developmental side managed to grab a goalless stalemate last time it took up the ground away at Chennai City. Luis Norton de Matos' side has come back to the City of Joy, where earlier this season it drew with Mohun Bagan.

"Ths is a place of football. I have very good memories from the time we played against Mohun Bagan. For us, we are going to try to be our best as usual. Kingfisher East Bengal is a team to challenge. A lot of concentration is needed to face them. It is going to be difficult but not an impossible mission."

"To play in Salt Lake Stadium would have been fantastic for the boys. But we have to play on artificial grass, it is difficult", he commented.

He added, "I am sure they have developed, what people expected from them, they have done better than that. It is important for every club to use boys aged 16-17, only then Indian football will develop."

While pressure mounts on the former Hero I-League winning coach to deliver in the Red and Golds colours, the youngsters will be hoping to create a major upset.

Kick-off is at 5.30 PM IST with the match to be broadcast live on Star Sports 2/ 2 HD. Live streaming will be available on Hotstar and Jio TV.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

Read the Free eBook

  Dugout videos