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ISL- Indian Super League

Preview: Bengaluru FC, Odisha aim to build momentum

Published at :January 13, 2023 at 10:59 PM
Modified at :December 13, 2023 at 1:01 PM
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(Courtesy : ISL Media)

Souvari Paul


Both teams won their previous games and are set to go for this fixture too!

After playing two consecutive away games, Bengaluru FC will return home on Friday to take on Odisha FC at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru. The Blues got their fourth win of the season in their last outing against NorthEast United. They defeated the Highlanders 2-1 at Guwahati. Simon Grayson and his men will look to capitalise on last week's win and display a spirited performance at home to get three points.

Odisha FC got back to winning ways against East Bengal in their last outing to finish their four-game winless run. It was yet another comeback win by Odisha against their favourite rival East Bengal in which they linched the game 3-1. The win took them to fifth place and cemented their place among the top six (for the time being). Josep Gombau will not want his team to suffer any more setback at this moment, especially against a struggling Bengaluru FC. Thus, we can expect Odisha to go for all three pints right from the word go.

In light of these, let us take a look at what the encounter has to offer.

The Stakes

Bengaluru FC

It has been a disastrous season for Bengaluru FC, especially after winning the pre-season tournament Durand Cup. The side has got only four wins and one draw from 13 games, which is a far cry from expectations given their squad depth. Still, there are faint chances for the side to finish among the top six. But for that, they have to win as many games as possible from the remaining fixtures. Saturday's game is no exception. Playing at home, the Blues will look to secure three points to keep their top-six hope alive.

Bengaluru FC are currently placed eighth with 13 points from 13 games. A win will take them to 16 points and level them with Chennaiyin FC, who will have played a game less.

Odisha FC

Saturday's game is very essential for Odisha FC as they are a resurgent team which have got new-found momentum. They will be desperate to continue the same against Bengaluru, especially with the business end of the league knocking on the door. Gombau would hate his side to falter again at this moment and give space to teams like Chennaiyin and Bengaluru for catching up with them and pushing them out of the top-six club. Hence, a win is important for the Kalinga Warriors who will definitely give their all for three points.

Odisha FC are currently in fifth place with 22 points from 13 games. A win will take them to 25 points and level them with third-placed Kerala Blasters, who will have played one game less.

Injury & Team News

Bengaluru FC have a fully fit squad going into this game.

For Odisha FC, all players are fit including Shubham Sarangi, however the lad might not feature in the matchday squad.

Head-to-Head

To date, Bengaluru FC and Odisha FC have met seven times in the ISL.

Bengaluru FC - 4

Odisha FC - 2

Drawn - 1

Predicted Line-ups

Bengaluru FC (3-4-1-2)

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (GK); Aleksandar Jovanovic, Alan Costa, Sandesh Jhingan; Prabir Das, Suresh Singh Wangjam, Rohit Kumar, Naorem Roshan Singh; Javi Hernandez; Sivasakthi Narayanan, Roy Krishna

Odisha FC (4-3-3)

Amrinder Singh (GK); Narender Gahlot, Osama Malik, Carlos Delgado, Denechandra Meitei; Saul Crespo, Raynier Fernandes, Thoiba Singh; Jerry Mawihmingthanga, Diego Mauricio, Nandhakumar Sekar

Player to Watch

Sivasakhti Narayanan (Bengaluru FC)

Sivasakthi Narayanan against NorthEast United. (Courtesy: ISL Media)

Sivasakhti had a brilliant game in Bengaluru's outing against NorthEast. He scored a spectacular goal to give his side the initial lead. In addition, his presence was a constant source of threat for NorthEast's defence. Consequently, he is expected to start against Odisha. Given his form, it would not be a surprise to see him impact the game in a positive manner for Bengaluru, especially playing at home.

Diego Mauricio (Odisha FC)

Diego Mauricio celebrates his goal against East Bengal. (Courtesy: ISL Media)

The man of the moment at Odisha FC is Diego Mauricio. He scored back-to-back braces for the side in their last two outings. Currently, he is one of the second highest scorers in the league with seven goals from 13 games. Given his devastating form, there is no doubt he will impact Saturday's game if Bengaluru's defence fall asleep.

Did You Know?

  • Odisha FC has never reached the ISL playoffs to date.
  • Bengaluru FC are Durand Cup 2022 champions.
  • Javi Hernandez, a current Bengaluru player, was a vital cog for Odisha last season.

Telecast

The match between Bengaluru FC and Odisha FC will take place at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru, on January 14th (Saturday). The kick-off time is 5:30 pm IST. The game will be telecasted live on the Star Sports Network. Disney+HotStar and JioTV will also stream the match.

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