The Blues will look to maintain their perfect record in the group…
Indian champions Bengaluru FC host Bangaladesh’s Abahani Limited Dhaka in a AFC Cup group stage match at the Kanteeraa Stadium in Bengaluru on Tuesday.
The Blues started their group stage campaign brightly and currently sit top of the table in Group E with six points, followed by Mohun Bagani.
The visitors Abahani are in their fourth season in the AFC Cup. Their first three campaigns had ended in the first round. In their most recent AFC Cup appearances, Abahani were beaten by Maldivian side Maziya at home with a scoreline of 2-0 which was followed by another defeat against Mohun Bagan earlier this month with a scoreline of 1-3. However, this might be their last chance to stay in the tournament and they are expected to give a tough fight against Bengaluru FC.
Bengaluru FC are without any injuries against Abahani Limited which will come as welcome news for coach Albert Roca after a disastrous domestic season. The Indian giants though will miss Sandesh Jhingan and Cameron Watson who are suspended after accumulating two yellow cards in the previous games.
Abahani Dhaka on the other hand, are also without any injuries for their third group stage match against Bengaluru FC on Tuesday. However, Yeasin Khan and Raihan Haasan were unfortunate to pick up two yellow cards each which will limit their activity against last year’s AFC Cup runners’ up. The visitors will miss key defender Samad Yussif against Bengaluru FC who was unable to travel with the team after failing to procure an Indian visa.
Head to Head
This is the first time these two teams will face each other in a competitive tournament.
Albert Roca- Bengaluru FC: It’s not just a question of winning, it’s about scoring goals and playing well and being impressive. We know that we can take some risks, but I don’t want to allow Mohun Bagan to take advantage of any slip-up.
Man to Watch
Sunil Chhetri-Bengaluru FC: Bengaluru FC’s iconic captain, who scored the winning goal for India against Myanmar a few WEEKS ago, will be a threat to reckon with for the Dhaka Giants on Tuesday. Chhetri, who is currently enjoying a purple patch in his career, is expected to spearhead the Bengaluru attack against the Bangladeshi outfit. With his pinpoint passing, sudden bursts of pace and movement on the pitch, Chhetri will fancy his chances of scoring against the Bangladesh outfit
Emeka Darlington-Abahani Limited Dhaka: The 28-year old Nigerian striker is known to be one of the deadliest strikers in the Bangladesh Premier League. Having spent two seasons with Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi earlier in his career where he emerged as one of the core members of the squad, Darlington offers not only speed but also the necessary physicality upfront as well as finishing ability which will make him a threat to reckon with against Bengaluru FC on Tuesday.
Bengaluru FC (4-3-3): Amrinder, Jhingan, Johnson, Juanan, Nishu, Watson, Rodrigues, Lyngdoh, Udanta, Lalhlimpuia, Chhetri.
Abahani Limited Dhaka (4-4-2): Sahidul, Faisal, Badsha, Nasirudddin, Rana, Ziban, Mamun Mia, Brown, Ziban, Darlington, Onuoha.