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ISL- Indian Super League

Chennaiyin Vs East Bengal Preview: Can Red and Gold move further up?

Published at :January 17, 2021 at 5:25 PM
Modified at :January 17, 2021 at 5:25 PM
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Csaba Laszlo's side will look to continue on their win in the last game against Odisha FC.

A win couldn't have come at a better time for Chennaiyin FC, as they finally put a stop to their rut in the Indian Super League. The Marina Machans saw out a 2-1 win against Odisha FC. Now, with renewed confidence and vigour, Chennaiyin will look to put together a string of good results with a win against SC East Bengal.

The Red and Gold Brigade are in good form themselves, having not tasted defeat in their last six games. They are now only a few points behind the playoffs spots and would look to further strengthen their cause. The game on Monday night offers a lot for both teams, which should make for an interesting contest.

The Stakes

For Chennaiyin FC, the win against Odisha brought them right back into the reckoning for the playoffs. But, the road ahead gets even tougher with more teams joining the quest for the top four. Hence, the side must continue from where they left off in their previous game.

After a disappointing start to their maiden season in the ISL, East Bengal finally seem to have found their feet in the league and now have an outside chance of making it to the playoffs. But, like their upcoming opponents, they've also got a lot of traffic to get through. Hence, they would have to take inspiration from last season's story of their opponents on Monday night. The Red and Gold certainly possess the quality, but the time has come for Robbie Fowler to persist with a settled XI rather than continuing his rotation policy.

Team News

Chennaiyin FC go into the game with Csaba Laszlo possessing a fully fit squad. He could be expected to play the same XI that featured in the 1-2 win against Odisha FC on Wednesday.

As for SC East Bengal, Robbie Fowler doesn't have any injury concerns to think about. But, he could be expected to ring in a few more changes from the side that featured in their last-ditch draw against Kerala Blasters on Friday. Jeje Lalpekhlua could also be summoned to feature against his former employers.

WATCH: Matti Steinmann scored a brace the last time SC East Bengal met Chennaiyin FC

The only meeting between these two teams ended in an exciting 2-2 draw three weeks ago.

Probable Lineups

Chennaiyin FC : Kaith (GK), Reagan, Sabia, Sipovic, Jerry, Thapa, Memo, Ali, Chhangte, Fatkhulloev, Isma.

SC East Bengal: Majumder (GK), Neville, Gharami, Fox, Rafique, Milan, Steinmann, Das, Enobakhare, Maghoma, Harmanpreet.

Man to Watch

Esmael Goncalves (Chennaiyin FC)

A good omen for Chennaiyin in their last game would be Isma's return to the fold and back into scoring form. The Marina Machans have scored the joint-lowest number of goals in the ISL this season (10) and it has repeatedly put the focus on their inability to convert the plethora of chances that they create. They would be hopeful that Isma's brace in the last game can cause an upturn in their attacking exploits and his form and finishing would be pivotal to Chennaiyin's fortunes.

In seven games that he has featured in, Isma has contributed three goals and an assist to the Marina Machans' cause and would prove to be their most potent weapon against a susceptible East Bengal defence. His physicality and pace would once again be required for the two-time ISL champions, if they are to continue down the path to the playoffs.

Bright Enobakhare (SC East Bengal)

Bright Enobakhare's start to life in the ISL has been similar to his first name. The Nigerian has been sprightly in his first four games so far and has given an altogether different dimension to the attack of the Red and Gold.

Enobhakare has scored twice and added an assist to his tally. A pacy forward with adept dribbling, he has also shown his quality in the distribution of play, averaging 40 passes a game with a creditable 66% accuracy. His shot tally of 1.25 shots/game is sure to improve with more quality around him and learning from the vast experience of Robbie Fowler. But, he already looks like an inspired addition to the ranks of SC East Bengal.

Enobakhare's young age and all-round presence add more value to East Bengal's attack and his partnership with Jacques Maghoma has proven to be a potent weapon for Fowler's men.

Did You Know?

  • East Bengal's Debjit Majumder has made the most number of saves this season so far (35).
  • Chennaiyin FC hold the record for the second-most number of yellow cards accumulated in ISL history (228) as well as the most fouls (1541).
  • East Bengal have conceded the third-highest number of goals this season (16).


The match between Chennaiyin FC and SC East Bengal will be live on Star Sports 1 & 1HD, Star Sports 2 & 2HD (ENGLISH), Star Sports Hindi 1 & 1HD, Star Sports 3 (HINDI) and several other regional languages. The match will also be available for live streaming on JioTV and Disney+Hotstar.