It’s once again going to be the battle of Spanish flare as Antonio Lopez Habas’ high soaring ATK Mohun Bagan takes on Kibu Vicuna’s slow going Kerala Blasters FC at the Fatorda on Sunday evening. Both the teams have met each other in the season opener which was sealed 1-0 by ATKMB’s Fijian star, Roy Krishna.
ATK Mohun Bagan have lost their last outing 2-1 against Northeast United FC as the King of Northeast, Federico Gallego scored the winner for them. Presently, ATK Mohun Bagan is placed 2nd in the league table with 24 points from 13 matches which includes 7 wins, 3 draws and 3 losses. ATKMB’s Australian forward is likely to miss today’s match and Indian winger Manvir Singh may start in place of the Australian upfront.
On the other hand, the man behind Mohun Bagan’s I-League triumph last season is currently undergoing a turbulent phase with his new side as Kerala Blasters are currently placed 9th in the league table with 15 points from 14 matches which included 3 wins, 6 draws and 5 losses. We all know how effortlessly Kibu Vicuna’s tactics led Mohun Bagan to win the I-League last season but, with Kerala Blasters FC, it seems like his fortune has taken few steps back and the Spanish gaffer is desperately trying to change it.
Also, Brazilian playmaker and Hero Indian Super League star, Marcelinho who has recently joined ATK Mohun Bagan in a swap deal for Brad Inman from Odisha FC is expected to make his debut for the Mariners tonight. Though he is having an utterly disappointing season so far, Marcelinho may end up being the most dreadful nightmare for Kibu Vicuna’s side. If he makes his debut tonight, it’s for sure that Vicuna will have to make some tactical rotations for his defense line and he should remain prepared for that moment.
Summing up in a whole, Mariners are having a much stronger and steady side when compared to that of Manjappada but still, the competition is expected to have a nail-biting end as Kerala Blasters FC have won all of their last 3 matches and it’s never easy to face a team who are trying si hard to come high on the table.
Kerala Blasters FC predicted XI (4-4-2)
Albino Gomes, Sandeep Singh, Bakary Kone, Costa Nhamoinesu, Jessel Carneiro, Sahal Abdul Samad, Rohit Kumar, Vicente Gomez, Lalthathanga Khawlhring, Jordan Murray, Gary Hooper.
ATK Mohun Bagan predicted XI (3-5-2)
Arindam Bhattacharya, Prabir Das, Tiri, Sandesh Jhingan, Subhasish Bose, Carl McHugh, Pritam Kotal, Javier Hernandez, Pronay Halder, Manvir Singh, Roy Krishna.