KO – Mon 21 Dec @ 19:30 IST
Currently sat on 13 points from their opening six league matches, ATK Mohun Bagan will be happy with their start to the season so far, but this will prove a huge test for them against Bengaluru, who have just one pointless and will leapfrog them in the Indian Super League table with a victory here.
Bengaluru are also yet to be beaten this season, although their matches have featured plenty of entertainment with them scoring 11 goals so far this season, the most of any team in the league. With ATK conceding just three goals, the joint least amount in the division then it sets this contest up for an intriguing clash of attack vs defence. Ultimately, with little separating the two teams in the table a very tight contest is in prospect, with both sides perhaps happy to settle for a draw.
McDowell’s Mohun Bagan will be hosting defending champions Bengaluru FC in a Round 7 Hero I-League match on Friday evening at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata. The Mariners played out a 1-1 draw against arch-rivals East Bengal a couple of days ago and are one of the only two sides in the league not to have faced a defeat yet.
The Kolkata giants now have eight points from their four matches and consecutive wins in the next two matches can take them to the top of the table. Sanjoy Sen, the coach of the team revealed that he will make a couple of changes in the first XI against the Blues. In Denson’s absence, Sehnaj Singh is expected to start while Dhanachandra Singh will be taking part in action despite having a head injury from the last match. The two teams were involved in a stalemate in the Federation Cup a few months ago and Sen claimed that his team could have scored at least three goals in that fixture.
Talking about the away side, Bengaluru FC has won the last three league matches after bagging a solitary point from their first three encounters. Eugeneson Lyngdoh and Thoi Singh have scored 3 goals each in the campaign and the South Indian side will hope that Sunil Chhetri, the captain of the side will be back to his usual self soon. The Ashley Westwood-coached side will be missing the services of central defender Curtis Osano, who was given the marching orders in the last match against Shillong Lajong in the last match.
A win in this match will take Bengaluru to the top of the ladder, while Mohun Bagan can reach the second spot with a match in hand. The teams have faced each other thrice in the past, with Bengaluru winning the bragging rights once, while on the other two occasions, they had to share the spoils.
PREDICTION: Total goals scored will be over 0.5