The Gaurs have a sizable lead over the Marina Machans but the latter have to win at any cost.

FC Goa will host Chennaiyin FC at the Fatorda Stadium on Sunday in their last home game for the ISL 2022-23 season. Thomas Brdaric’s side have had some spirited victories in this game but it has all gone down to the wire. It’s up to Carlos Pena’s men to capitalise on their situation and get the win to stay in contention for the knockouts. Both sides are in a do-or-die situation and it remains to be seen whether they will go all out or take calculated risks. 

The Stakes

FC Goa

The Gaurs are stuck in a precarious position at the sixth, level on points with Odisha in seventh place. Bengaluru FC and ATK Mohun Bagan are only a point ahead of them as well, with the Mariners also having a game in hand. In order to avoid conceding their gilt-edged lead to Odisha FC and also move further up in the table, they must go for all three points. A loss would easily leave them vulnerable to losing out on the last berth for a second season running. While a draw would leave everything to chance, Pena’s army must repeat their reverse fixture victory at home. Re-entry into the playoffs is nigh but the Goan outfit must stay resolute and diligently choose their battles.

Chennaiyin FC

Thomas Brdaric has overseen a tough nine-game run that has only seen them win once, lose thrice, and draw five times. However, their momentum should have picked up given their victory against East Bengal in the last outing. A win would narrow the gap down to another three points needed to contest for a knockout berth. The same looks extremely unlikely. It will not only require the Marina Machans to win all of their remaining fixtures but also a dash of luck bestowed by the other sides’. Given both Goa and Odisha lose their remaining fixtures, Chennaiyin FC can still qualify for the playoffs. That said, nothing less than a win will suffice if they are to salvage something of their season.  

Injury & Team News

Sourav Das and Debjit Majumdar remain out of contention for Chennaiyin FC with injuries. Centre-half Fallou Diagne and right-back Ajith Kumar are at risk of suspension on the other hand with four yellows each. FC Goa have a fully fit roster to the field and only risks losing Edu Bedia to suspensions as the Spaniard has already amassed four bookings. 


FC Goa and Chennaiyin FC have met each other on 22 occasions in the ISL, prior to this match.

FC Goa –12

Chennaiyin FC – 8

Drawn – 2

Predicted Line-Ups

FC Goa (4-3-3)

Dheeraj Singh (GK); Seriton Fernandes, Anwar Ali, Aibanbha Dohling, Sanson Pereira; Hernan Santana, Lenny Rodrigues, Edu Bedia; Brandon Fernandes, Iker Guarrotxena, Noah Sadaoui

Chennaiyin FC (4-2-3-1)

Samik Mitra(GK); Edwin Vanspaul, Vafa Hakhanameshi, Gurmukh Singh, Aakash Sangwan; Anirudh Thapa, Julias Duker; Ninthoi Meetei, Rahim Ali, Abdenasser El Khayati; Petar Sliskovic

Player to watch

Noah Sadaoui (FC Goa)

Noah Sadaoui has had three goals in the last four games. (Courtesy: ISL Media)

The electric winger has returned to form with three assists and three goals in the last four matches. Sadaoui has been phenomenal upfront and down the wings this season and can massively help attack the Southern giants. Wingers and attackers who can use the channels to penetrate defences seem to have terrorised Chennaiyin FC this season. Interestingly, the Marina Machans conceded at the hands of similar players Noah and Redeem Tlang in their last meeting. Noah’s ongoing running can tire down Chennaiyin’s Ajith and Hakhanameshi both. In such a situation, marking his runs or tracking him in the box can become hectic. As a result, Guarrotxena and Brandon can easily open up space for him to shoot or create chances. He will be instrumental in stretching Brdaric’s compact 4-2-3-1 setup and allow Pena’s side to play fluent football. 

Abdenasser El Khayati (FC Goa)

El Khayati will be key to Chennaiyin against FC Goa. (Courtesy: ISL Media)

The Dutch winger has been Chennaiyin FC’s highlight of the season and can showcase his brilliance against the Gaurs. Although he was not present in their squad for the reverse fixture, he will be a dangerous opponent for the likes of Seriton and Sanson. His versatility and nimble feet are his primary asset and can harrow defences like anything. From finishing off moves with volleys to creating his own by beating markers and curling one in the top corner, El Khayati has done it all. FC Goa have frequently lost the ball in their own half this season, simply due to over-ambitious passing and individual lapses. The silky forward can help Chennaiyin prey on these chances by picking up the ball and immediately launching attacks. His ball-carrying volume is also going to be instrumental if he maintains it against the Gaurs. The Marina Machans can peg the Goan outfit back with the same if he is deployed efficiently. 

Did You Know?

  • Chennaiyin FC inflicted the heaviest defeat on any team this season with a 7-3 victory against NorthEast United.
  • FC Goa lost their last game 3- 5 to winners Mumbai City while Chennaiyin FC triumphed against East Bengal 2-0.
  • The Goan outfit has scored five times against Chennaiyin on two occasions and did so without a reply in ISL 2021/22.


The match between FC Goa and Chennaiyin FC will be played at the Fatorda Stadium in Goa on Thursday (16th February). The match will be live-streamed on Disney+ Hotstar and Jio Cinema. Moreover, it will also be telecasted on the Star Sports Network.

For more updates, follow Khel Now on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube and join our community on Telegram.