AFC Cup: Bagan looks to preserve unbeaten record

Having ensured the top spot in the continental competition with a round to go, Mohun Bagan coach Sanjoy Sen will look at resting a good number of his regulars in preference for the team‘s crucial Federation Cup semifinal ‘away’ fixture against Shillong Lajong FC.

Mohun Bagan coach Sanjoy Sen will be looking to rest some of his key players in the match against South China AA.   -  G. P. Sampath Kumar

Mohun Bagan will be banking on its current good form to preserve the unbeaten record it has maintained so far in the AFC Cup, when it plays the concluding group-G league match of the tournament against South China AA of Hong Kong here at Indira Gandhi Stadium, on Wednesday.

Having ensured the top spot in the continental competition with a round to go, Mohun Bagan coach Sanjoy Sen will look at resting a good number of his regulars in preference for the team‘s crucial Federation Cup semifinal ‘away’ fixture against Shillong Lajong FC (at Shillong on May 14).

Sen’s decision to rest the core group of players, which may include the names like strikers Sony Norde and Cornell Glen, midfielders Pronoy Halder and Katsumi Yusa, goalkeeper Debjit Majumdar among others, may also be prompted by the identification of its round-of-16 opponent in AFC Cup.

Mohun Bagan will play the group-E runner-up Tampines Rovers of Singapore in the pre-quarterfinal knock-out match again at Indira Gandhi Stadium on May 24, as it could not manage the original home venue Salt Lake Stadium which is undergoing renovation for the Under-17 World Cup scheduled next year.

Mohun Bagan, having secured the top spot with 11 points from three wins and two draws, may also be looking at the fact that it blanked South China FC 4-0 while visiting Hong Kong early in March. While it is an inconsequential match for Mohun Bagan, the visitor will be keen to pick up a win in order to ensure the second position in the group and progress to the next round. A draw will make it uncertain for South China, which has six points from five matches, as Yangon FC (currently placed third with five points) may overtake the former if it wins its last round fixture.

  Dugout videos