I-League: Mohun Bagan seeks first home win against Shillong Lajong

Mohun Bagan will look to continue with its winning momentum when it takes on a youthful Shillong Lajong in the I-League at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) on Sunday.

Experienced strikers Henry Kisekka (L) and Aser Dipanda Dicka will be expected to fire against Lajong's leaky defence.   -  AIFF MEDIA

After returning to winning ways on the previous I-League match day, Mohun Bagan will look to continue with its winning momentum when it takes on a youthful Shillong Lajong at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) on Sunday.

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Mohun Bagan shrugged off the derby defeat to arch-rival East Bengal, by registering an impressive away victory against champion Minerva on Wednesday. It is sixth on the table with 12 points from eight games and need more wins to pose a serious challenge to the title.

Coach Sankarlal Chakraborty reflected the mood in the Bagan camp when he said, “Winning the next match after the Derby has morally boosted us. Now, we are trying to maintain the winning momentum. We want three points to be in a good position on the league table. We have not won a single match at our home ground. This is one of our disadvantages. Luck was not in our favour when we played the other games. We hope to turn that around [against Lajong].”

Poor defensive record

Shillong looks hardly capable of denying Bagan a win on Sunday, given it has the worst defence in the league, letting in 22 goals in its eight games so far. That includes a 1-6 drubbing to debutant Real Kashmir.

Its leaky defence has almost made impressive attacking play irrelevant, which has so far netted 10 goals, the same number Bagan has managed.

Coach Alison Kharsyntiew was forthright in his views ahead of the game saying, “Being honest, I am looking for development of these young players. The players have worked very hard and in some games have performed very well, but we are not winning games. In four or five games, we were lacking defence so we are working very hard on it. We hope to improve against Mohun Bagan tomorrow. Playing against Mohun Bagan is always very tough but we are aiming for all three points.”

On paper, it will certainly be Shillong’s fragile and inexperienced defence against the likes of Mohun Bagan’s strike force of Dipanda Dicka and Henry Kisekka. Given the attacking instincts of the two sides, one can expect a lot of goals from this one.