The top two teams from the I-League begin their campaign in the Federation Cup on Wednesday as they face-off in Manjeri…Bengaluru FC and Sporting Clube de Goa will look to seize an early advantage when the two teams clash at the MDS Complex, Manjeri-Kerala, in their group B opening clash of the Federation Cup.
The southern side have been in rich vein of form like the Flaming Oranje. Of the last five matches played in the I-League, both have four each which again indicates the kind of confidence the said teams are in.
Earlier in the season when the two teams met at Bangalore Football Stadum, it ended in a stalemate. However it is unlikely that the game would end in a similar fashion on Wednesday as they would go for full points in order to make a good start after being placed in the toughest cluster at the Federation Cup with East Bengal and Rangdajied United being the other two teams.
Having led the I-League table for quite some time now, Bengaluru are being touted as the favourites, something which their coach Ashley Westwood begs to differ on.
“We are looking forward to this game and our preparation has been good. This is a completely different competition from the I-League and we will be trying our best to match the standards that have brought us success in recent months,” said Westwood.
His counterpart, Oscar Bruzon of Sporting Clube de Goa believes that his side have the capability to go all the way and lift the Federation Cup title as their preparations have been good.
He has told his players to approach the tournament where they need to play ‘five finals’ in order to win silverware.
“As you know we have been working hard during the break and being consistent with our continuous improvement strategy. We have settled the last adjustments with regards to the game against Bengaluru.
“Federation Cup is a tournament where you need to play five finals and we have the first one against the current leaders of the I-League. Sporting is ready for achieving big things and it is our first opportunity to show it,” said Bruzon.
The tie comes with a promise of enticing football for the fans given that the top two teams in the league will look to win their first game.
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