The Mariners were held to a draw in the reverse fixture.
ATK Mohun Bagan will eye a second successive semifinal berth and also look to bridge the gap at the top when they take on lowly Chennaiyin FC in the Indian Super League at the PJN Stadium in Fatorda on Thursday.
ATK Mohun Bagan
ATKMB have been on a roll, remaining unbeaten for 14 games, the second-longest such streak in the history of the tournament. They sit in third place with 34 points and two games to play, and a point would be enough for them to secure a semi-final spot for the second straight year.
The Mariners will then also be level on points with league leaders Jamshedpur FC who dethroned Hyderabad FC on Tuesday to go top of the tree.
For Juan Ferrando’s ATKMB, besides the likes of Hugo Boumous and Joni Kauko, the Indian forwards have played a key role with Liston Colaco being their top scorer during the unbeaten run with six goals in the 14 matches. Manvir Singh has been the second-highest goal scorer for the club in this run with 5 goals.
Colaco will make his 50th ISL appearance against Chennaiyin, and the in-form player would want to leave a mark and also help his team qualify for the semis. For the record, Indian players have scored 19 goals this season, accounting for 52.78% of the team’s goals.
Meanwhile, for Chennaiyin it has been a season to forget. They leaked three goals against Kerala Blasters in their last outing to remain eighth in the table with just 20 points from 19 games. It will be their final game of the season, and coach Sabir Pasha would hope the former champions can end on a high.
The club made a solid start to the ISL 21-22, going unbeaten in their first four games but they have been on a downward spiral ever since, going winless in their last seven engagements and losing five in that period.
Bozidar Bandovic, who was appointed as the head coach at the start of the season, was sacked after the club lost 5-0 to FC Goa, their heaviest defeat in ISL history. Chennaiyin FC held ATK Mohun Bagan to a 1-1 draw in the first leg and will want to repeat that in the reverse fixture.
Head coach Sabir Pasha confirmed that there will be a few changes in the lineup for the game against the Mariners. That could mean further opportunities for youngsters like Suhail Pasha, Rahim Ali and others who have shown glimpses of quality so far this season.
The coach also informed that his side will have a ‘direct’ approach to the game tomorrow. So it remains to be seen what tactics the team employ to counter the threat of Liston Colaco and Co. Chennaiyin FC do not have any injury concerns in their squad for their final game of the season.
ATK Mohun Bagan
ATK Mohun Bagan could be without the services of the influential duo of David Williams and Hugo Boumous as both are doubtful for the game on Thursday night. They both are still recovering from injuries.
Other than the two, Juan Ferrando has no other concerns ahead of Thursday’s game.
Probable Starting XI
Chennaiyin FC: Kaith (GK); Vanspaul, Devrani, Narayan, Jerry; Germanpreet, Koman, Thapa (C); Ninthoi, Lukasz, Rahim Ali.
ATK Mohun Bagan: Amrinder (GK); Kotal (C), Jhingan, Tiri, Subhasish; McHugh, Rodrigues; Manvir, Joni Kauko, Liston, Roy Krishna.
Chennaiyin FC and ATK Mohun Bagan have faced each other 17 times in the league. ATK Mohun Bagan hold the aces in this contest with eight wins to Chennaiyin FC’s four. There have been five drawn encounters in this fixture.
Did You Know?
- ATKMB’s Amrinder Singh leads the league in most saves made (48)
- Nerijus Valskis is one goal away from becoming the second-highest goalscorer in the history of Chennaiyin FC (he is currently the highest active goalscorer for the club)
- ATKMB have received the second-lowest number of yellow cards this season (25), but have received the most number of red cards as well (3).
The Chennaiyin FC vs ATK Mohun Bagan match on March 3 (Thursday) will take place at the JLN Stadium in Fatorda. It is a 07:30 pm kick-off time. Star Sports Network will live telecast the match, while Disney+Hotstar and JIO TV hold the live streaming rights.