Bhawanipore will face a star-studded Mohammedan side, but they have the potential to stage an upset.
In the first of the two matches in group D of the Federation Cup, Mohammedan Sporting face familiar foes in the form of Bhawanipore at the MDS Stadium, Manjeri.
Sanjoy Sen, the manager of the Black and Whites had decided to field Luciano Sobrosa in the last match, despite an injury concern about the Brazilian and it is expected that he will pair up once again pair up with Mehrajuddin Wadoo at the heart of the defense after being rested in Thursday's practice session.
Nirmal Chettri and R Dhanarajan will be the two fullbacks and while Anthony Soren and Manish Maithani will be pulling the strings from the midfield. Penn Orji will be employed in the hole behind Josimar Da Silva.
Josimar, the joint highest scorer in the I-League has set off his journey in the Federation Cup with flying colours, scoring a goal and providing an assist in the 2-1 win against United Sikkim in the last clash. Syed Rahim Nabi has been used in an advanced role by Sen and he will once again be given the license of bombing down the flanks.
Sanjoy however sounded concerned about the dew problem in the ground but stressed that his team will like to repeat their heroics, especially before a strong fan following in Kerala.
Although they did manage to get the better of United Sikkim, Mohammedan’s defense wasn’t at their best as the north eastern could have easily scored twice, having hit the crossbar on one occasion.
Bhawanipore will take heart from their first half performance against Dempo SC and despite the absence of talisman Jose Barreto, coach Juliano Fontana remains optimistic.
“We will look to attack as we are the underdogs,” he said.
Much will be expected from Dipendu Dowary, who will be employed as the lone striker by the Brazilian coach.
Debjit Majumder, the man of the tournament in the recently concluded Bordoloi Cup will be another star to watch out for.