AFC Cup: Bagan to post reserves against full-strength Maziya

Keeping the crucial I-League encounter as the priority, coach Sanjoy Sen opted for a lone foreigner in the Japanese midfielder Katsumi Yusa while announcing the squad for the outing against Maziya.

Bagan has also rested a few of the Indian names who turn out regularly for the side while looking to try a good number of ‘reserves’ against the Maldives visitor.   -  K. Murali Kumar

Mohun Bagan will have to keep its I-League hopes behind for a day when it looks to further its campaign in the AFC Cup while taking on the Maziya Sports and Recreation Club of Maldives in a group E league tie here at the Rabindra Sarobar Stadium on Wednesday.

With barely two days separating the two fixtures Mohun Bagan coach Sanjoy Sen will be hard pressed to find the right team that will allow him to preserve the best for the match against Aizawl FC, which will virtually decide the I-League title of this season. Keeping the crucial I-League encounter as the priority, Sen opted for a lone foreigner in the Japanese midfielder Katsumi Yusa while announcing the squad for the outing against Maziya.

Bagan has also rested a few of the Indian names who turn out regularly for the side while looking to try a good number of ‘reserves’ against the Maldives visitor. “The I-League is important but my team will go for a win tomorrow,” Sen said ahead of the match. The Bagan chief coach had every reason to look for a good result as his team has lost only two matches in the season so far. While Bagan lost only once in the 16 rounds of I-League, Sen’s boys started with a loss in the AFC Cup group league campaign going down 1-2 against Bengaluru FC. Bagan outplayed Abahani Limited Dhaka 3-1 in the next outing at home earlier this month. Sen will be looking to pick up a positive result against Maziya, against which his team did not lose in the recent times.

Maziya, which also has the same record like Bagan losing against Bengaluru while winning the Abahani, is looking to secure the second spot. The team winning tomorrow will have great chances of securing the second spot (behind Bengaluru) and qualifying to the next stage,” said Asadhulla Abdullal, the Maziya S&RC captain ahead of the match. The visitor has four foreigners in the squad and will looking the make the most of the situation against an arguably emaciated Bagan side.

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