This match will be the first outing between Mumbai City FC and Odisha FC at the Mumbai Football Arena.
Mumbai City FC have started well winning four points away from home and will look to build on the momentum, with success in the first home game of the season against the struggling Odisha FC.
Mumbai City finished last season as semi-finalists, as they aced the table by maintaining a strong home record and the second strongest away run in the league last time around.
Last season, Odisha FC, played as Delhi Dynamos and coach Josep Gombau ensured a good start, which was followed by a rickety season. Although, the charm of the Metro Derby will be missing, a new rivalry could be forged when the two sides meet.
Mumbai City FC
Mumbai City would like to start strong in front of the West Coast Brigade, who have stuck by them through thick and thin. Mumbai Football Arena has been long considered a fortress for the Islanders and the onus lies with the team to prove their might at home once again.
Coming off a victory and a draw, against Kerala Blasters and Chennaiyin FC respectively, Mumbai will look to build an unbeaten run like that of last season, which propelled them into the top four and made them a surprise package to root for.
Odisha FC, on the other hand, have started abysmally. They have lost both their opening games, albeit against strong opponents and away from home. They will still look to ensure that this doesn’t become a trend.
Odisha are slated to play four away games, before starting their home campaign on the 24th of November. This means that the going might get tougher, if they were to lose their third game on the trot.
Gombau will be hoping at least for a draw from the game. Thus, the Mumbai City-Odisha clash is set to be a crucial one for both teams, albeit for different reasons.
Mumbai City FC
The home team have a litany of injuries coupled with the suspension of Souvik Chakrobarti. In the injured column we have, Modou Sougou, Mato Grgic, Anwar Ali and Davinder Singh, who is still rehabilitating from last year’s knock.
They might once again field an all-Indian back four, with Vignesh Dakshinamurthy taking Souvik’s place.
Odisha FC go into the game with a fully fit squad awaiting selection, but the two defeats might change some equations in the lineup for Josep Gombau.
Xisco Hernandez will again lead the line for the visiting team, who would like to break the duck in the wins column and mount a formidable campaign that might see them challenging for a playoffs spot.
Technically, the sides are set to meet for the first time since the formation of Odisha FC. The team were earlier known as Delhi Dynamoos, before they were forced to shift base from the capital to Bhubaneswar, for various reasons.
Thus, taking this into consideration, Mumbai have won five matches against the erstwhile Delhi Dynamos, who have won two. Three matches between them have ended in a draw.
Man to Watch
Amrinder Singh (Mumbai City FC)
The goalkeeper has been in the form of his life ever since he joined Mumbai City and it has continued this season too. It is difficult to go past him as he organizes his defence wisely and ensures that his sharp reflexes are put to good use.
Even though Mumbai won the match against Kerala on the back of a Amine Chermiti strike, the win must also be credited to Amrinder, as he blocked a Ogbeche shot with a reflex time of 0.34 seconds.
Xisco Hernandez (Odisha FC)
Xisco knows two things really well, the Indian Super League and putting the ball in the back of the net. He has led the line at Bengaluru FC, where he gained the necessary experience and will look to make a big impact with Odisha.
Gombau will be looking to build a team around him and ensure that he gets the necessary service.
Mumbai City FC
Arshdeep, Gharami, Delgado, Das, Sarangi, Mawihmingthanga, Rai, Guedes, Xisco, Tebar, Santana.
Did You Know?
Odisha FC (erstwhile Delhi Dynamos) have failed to win any of their last six matches, losing four of them. They have only won two of their last 10 games.
- Mumbai City has reached the semi-finals twice in their existence and both times, home form has been key.
- Xisco Hernandez had scored just one goal in 20 matches last season for BFC, but has already scored once in two games for Odisha FC so far.
The match will be played at 7:30PM IST at the Mumbai Football Arena, on Wednesday (31st October). The game will be broadcast live on the Star Sports Network, It will also be streamed on Hotstar and Jio TV.