The Airmen have failed to hold on to a lead thrice in their last 4 games, while the Arrows have been thrashed in their last 5 ties, hence both the team are in need of 3 points...
Air India face-off against Pailan Arrows in an I-League encounter at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune on Saturday. Both the teams are in a desperate need of a win, with the Airmen looking to snap off a 4 game win-less streak, which has included three 1-1 draws, while Arthur Papas’ side has lost their last 5 ties.
The Achilles heel of Anthony Fernandes’ side is their inability to hold on to a lead, having led in all the 3 draws that they managed in their last 4 games.
The injury to Pratik Chaudhari has hurt the team at the back, while the inability to replace Lamine Tamba on their foreign roster is another reason for their present problems at the back.
Upfront, Henry Ezeh and E.O Junior have shown some spark as a pair, while Souvik Chakrabarty has only gotten better with more game-time.
Sandesh Gadkari’s return to the fold means they also have options on the bench.
The Airmen need a win to move away from the relegation zone...
With just 3 points between sides from 9th to 13th, the Airmen need to start picking up points to prevent being embroiled in a relegation battle.
One team that has no issues regarding relegation is Pailan Arrows, who as per rules, cannot get relegated.
They sit just one point above Air India having played 2 games more, in a season that started so brightly, but is threating to go haywire now.
The problem with Arthur Papas’ side are primarily the lack of quality on the bench, which is now starting to impede the progress made under the Australian.
Reliant on Holicharan Narzary upfront, the Arrows need a striker to complement the talented youngster, and it seems like they are bringing in Seminlen Doungel for the same.
However in their last 5 games, apart from scoring just 2, they have also conceded a whopping 14 goals, which means they have several problems at the back.
Papas has constantly chopped and change personnel at the back in recent times, but none seem to be able to stem the rot, something the Airmen will be hoping to take full advantage of.
Air India – Jagroop Singh started in-between the sticks in the last game, as Sukhwinder Singh had a slight niggle. It is still doubtful if he is fit enough to take back his spot in the eleven.
Pailan Arrows – The Arrows have no big injury worries to speak of, but Papas is expected to shuffle his pack, in a bid to return to winning ways.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Pailan Arrows have the edge in recent head-to-head meetings, as they have won 3 of the last 5, with Air India winning the other two.
- On four of these occasions, the team that has scored 2 goals has won the game.
- With 8 losses this season, the Kolkatan outfit have the unwanted record of having suffered the most losses this year.
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