Trevor Morgan's side will try to snatch 3 points against an inspired Pailan Arrows side to comeback from their recent debacle..
Naoba, Okpara, Arnab, Saumik;
Khabra, Mehtab, Lalrindika;
Narayan, Shouvik, Deepak, Kotal;
Prabir, Milan, Pronay, Tirthankar;
It suddenly seems that East Bengal have lost their plot as they have lost 3 of their last four matches. In the I-League and have suffered consecutive losses against Prayag United and Mumbai FC after going through a 10-match unbeaten streak. Trevor Morgan had conceded the fact that his team selection was wrong in the last match. It will not be a surprise to see a few changes in the regular XI of the side.
Due to renovation works going on in the Salt Lake Stadium, the match will take place in Kalyani, a venue both teams are unfamiliar with. Even when the East Bengal officials decided to play the Calcutta League matches in the club’s own ground, Trevor Morgan protested claiming that it will be difficult for his players to play their trademark passing football in a smaller ground. This new venue would also brink the same concerns for the British coach.
For East Bengal, who had now slipped down to the fourth place in the league-table, this match is make-or-break one. They will face a talented bunch of young Indian players, well guided by the Australian tactician Arthur Papas. The young brigade has excelled in the current edition compared to their horrendous outings in the last few seasons. They now have 14 points from their 11 matches, with the match against Mohun Bagan having been called off. They will also try to get back to the winning ways as they are winless since 1st December.
Will Penn Orji be back to his best against Mumbai FC?
The youngsters will rely on the likes of Alwyn George and Holicharan Narzary to score a goal. Other known faces like Tirthankar and Shouvik will also try to perform their level best as these are the few matches they get a packed house to perform before.
For East Bengal, Penn Orji needs to pick up his form fast as his lacklustre performance in the last few matches has taken its toll on the team. The over defensive line-up in the Red and Gold midfield is also criticized as they lack proper wingers in both the flanks. Uga Okpara is not available because of the suspension he faced after the post-match scuffle with Rasaq Belo. This gives young Raju Gaikwad a chance to get into the first XI and prove his mettle. Manandeep Singh, who featured in the Arrows side in the 2010-11 season will also try to find his name on the score-sheet against his former side.
Pailan Arrows:- They played good football but were denied any points by a Joaquim Abranches brace in their last match. It is unlikely that Papas will make any changes to the set side.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- East Bengal has lost 3 of their last 4 matches. Before these matches, they were on an unbeaten streak of 32 matches.
Arthur Papas is the coach of both Pailan Arrows and Indian U-23 squad.
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