Armando Colaco has a tough job to emulate by guiding the Red and Gold to Federation Cup success, something which Trevor Morgan was an expert in…East Bengal begin defense of the Federation Cup title when they face Rangdajied United on Wednesday at the MDS Stadium, Manjeri, Kerala.
The Kolkata outfit have won two of the last three editions of the tournament and finished as a runner-up on one occasion. On the other hand, coach Armando Colaco’s record in the Federation Cup is fairly decent having won it once but not as exceptional when compared to the number of times he has won the I-League title with Dempo SC.
It will be interesting to see how East Bengal adapt to Colaco’s tactics and continue their top form in the cup tournament.
Arnab Mondal is unavailable as he has to represent Central Revenue Sports back in Kolkata but have been boosted with the return of Uga Okpara.
Having won the Calcutta Premier League (CFL) last week, confidence will be high but the defeat to Mohun Bagan in an inconsequential derby will certainly scar their defensive line which looked shaky.
“The game against Rangdajied will not be easy,” said Colaco.
And he is right to think so. In the last five I-League matches, East Bengal and Rangdajied United have won and drawn twice and lost once each. Rangdajied too have won the Shillong League like their counterparts.
Coach Santosh Kashyap has made a host of signings, namely Rehnesh TP, Sushant Matthew and Steven Dias, but they won’t be available for the Federation Cup.
“We are ready to do upset other teams in the tournament. We are in a group of death and facing top teams as per the league table. We are ready for the East Bengal challenge.
“Our goalkeepers are playing better having learnt from the time spent with Subrata Paul. The first match is important and we want to start on a positive note,” said Kashyap.
A tough test awaits East Bengal as Colaco’s challenge begins: To ensure that the club continues their good run in the Federation Cup.
Follow Rahul Bali on
How do you stay up with football when on the move? With http://m.goal.com –your best source for mobile coverage of the beautiful game.