A crucial encounter at the Salt Lake Stadium will go a long way in deciding Mohammedan's fate as they sit at the bottom of the heap...Mohammedan Sporting take on Rangdajied United in a crucial Round 25 match at the Salt Lake Stadium with the Black and Whites desperate for all three points in a bid to save relegation.
When Mohammedan had met them earlier in the season in Shillong, they were victorious 3-0 but it counts for little as the two sides have seen changes galore since then.
While Mohammedan have 18 points from 21 matches and are at the bottom of the table, a late resurgence has seen the north eastern side quickly climb up to sit pretty at 24 points from 22 matches.
It has been a stop start season for Mohammedan who have shown tremendous form in cup competitions as they have picked up the IFA Shield as well as the Durand Cup but have failed miserably in the league.
A change of managers too has not given them the enough momentum as they are still embroiled in the relegation battle. They are winless in their last five having picked up only 2 points with their latest defeat being the 3-1 drubbing at the hands of East Bengal.
One positive for them might be that they do not have quite a tough run ahead like the other relegation contenders but they need to up the ante if they want to survive.
Rangdajied have given themselves a second life after signing Ranti Martins who took them to a hat-trick of wins before being stopped by East Bengal. They then managed to kill off Salgaocar in Goa before ultimately falling prey to the law of averages against Sporting Clube de Goa.
With Ranti in fine form and the Shillong side looking fluid, Mohammedan will have to play their heart out for a win which will give them a nice cushion over Churchill brothers, the team nearest to them when it comes to the battle to survive in the top division.
Selection choices will continue to hound coach Sanjoy Sen as he had tried to rope in fresh faces for the derby against East Bengal dropping established faces like Mehrajuddin Wadoo to the bench which still failed to work.
Hering Shangpliang though will have no such problems as he is in charge of a well settled eleven being led by the dangerous Ranti who faces up to old nemesis Luciano Sobrosa in defense.