Mumbai host East Bengal, Sporting Goa entertain newbies Shivanjians

Mumbai FC host Kingfisher East Bengal at Cooperage in the second round of the Hero I-League on Sunday. East Bengal, who emerged victorious in their previous game against Sporting Club de Goa, will be in for a difficult test against Khalid Jamil’s Mumbai FC side who have lost just once in their last ten I-League matches.

Mumbai FC are unbeaten in their last four meetings with East Bengal in the top flight and have got the better of their Kolkata opponents in their last three meetings at home.

Mumbai FC host Kingfisher East Bengal at Cooperage in the second round of the Hero I-League on Sunday. East Bengal, who emerged victorious in their previous game against Sporting Club de Goa, will be in for a difficult test against Khalid Jamil’s Mumbai FC side who have lost just once in their last ten I-League matches.

History

Mumbai FC are unbeaten in their last four meetings with East Bengal in the top flight and have got the better of their Kolkata opponents in their last three meetings at home. Eelco Schattorie’s East Bengal side fell to a 2-1 defeat, the last time the Red and Golds made the trip to Mumbai.

Mumbai FC Head Coach Khalid Jamil felt it was important to continue the good results against East Bengal over the years as he vowed to attack the Kolkata outfit from the first minute. “If we have a good record against East Bengal, then we must continue it. We are playing at home tomorrow and we will attack from start to end. It is important to attack or else it will be difficult to win the game,” Jamil told the media on Saturay.

Jamil, however, was respectful of his side’s opponents on Sunday as he conceded that his side will face a tough game against East Bengal. “East Bengal are a very good team, they play some really good football and I am expecting a really tough game for us,” Jamil added.

Injury update

The Mumbai FC gaffer also confirmed that he has no injury worries but pretty much ruled out new signing Ryuki Kozawa out of Sunday’s clash on the grounds of a lack of match fitness.

Unlike Mumbai FC, East Bengal have a few injury worries as Head Coach Biswajit Bhattacharya confirmed Cavin Lobo, Gurwinder Singh and Sehnaj Singh will not feature against Mumbai FC. “We have plenty of injuries. I can confirm that Cavin Lobo, Gurwinder Singh and Sehnja Singh won’t play a part in tomorrow’s game. But we have a squad that is good enough to cope with all these injuries, so we are looking forward to the game,” he said.

Sporting look to bounce back

In the earlier game on Sunday, Sporting Clube de Goa will look to bounce back from their opening match loss to East Bengal when they take on new entrant DSK Shivanjians at the Nehru Stadium, in Margao, tomorrow.

With just nine teams and 16 matches to play, Sporting coach Mateus Costa knows how important it is to win their home matches. Costa will be playing the same side from the opening game with Rowllin Borges coming back after recovering from an injury.

“We started well in the last match and were leading 1-0 at half time but lack of concentration in the defence cost us dearly towards the end as we conceded three goals. We don’t want to repeat the same mistakes and hope for a win tomorrow,” stated Costa.

Meanwhile, DSK Shivajians coach Derrick said: “Sporting are a good side and playing the attacking game and with Odafe in their side, they have the advantage up front. This is our first time we are playing in the I-League and want to get a good start as it is an away match. We had a good training session and are now ready to make an impact in the league.”