I-League: Aizawl FC hosts high flying Minerva Punjab FC

Minerva Punjab FC is coming to the tie on the back of an unbeaten home run which has earned the team 13 points from 5 matches.

Aizawl FC players attend a practice session on Tuesday.   -  Special Arrangement

Aizawl FC will play its third home match of the season against high flying Minerva Punjab FC at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium in Aizawl on Wednesday.

Minerva Punjab FC is coming to the tie on the back of an unbeaten home run which has earned the team 13 points from 5 matches.

Minerva Punjab FC coach Khogen Singh insisted on keeping the focus on the match and not the standings.

He said, “We will try to continue this form until the end of the season. But our fixtures will be tougher as playing in away matches and I have experienced this as a player myself. Aizawl will be a tough opponent but i hope we can end the season in our current position.”

Minerva Punjab FC’s should largely thank its Bhutanese forward Chencho Gyeltshen for the team's transition to championship contenders.

Chencho made the difference in Minerva's last match having scored the solitary goal of the match against Indian Arrows.

“It is my first season in India and it is quite different to Bhutan. I want to score as many goals possible and be the best player in the league. Lifting the Hero I-League with Minerva is my main aim and I hope we can achieve that as a team,” he said.

Chencho is one of the best players in the league so far but Aizawl’s Portuguese coach Paulo Menezes said it will not man mark the forward.

“Man-marking is not my philosophy and we will not mark Chencho tomorrow as well. We will play as a team and I hope we can collect 3 points,” Menezes said.

Reigning champion Aizawl FC was battered it its last tie at home, losing to Shillong Lajong FC 1-0.

“As compared to the last season, we are a completely peculiar side. The coach is different and our styles and tactics are also different. But there are still a lot of matches to be played and I hope we can finish the season in a good fashion,” he opined.

The match between Aizawl FC and Minerva Punjab will be telecast live on Star Sports 2, Star Sports HD 2 at 2.00 pm and will be streamed live on Hotstar and Jio TV.