AFC Cup 2018: Abahani Dhaka vs Bengaluru FC, Predicted Starting XIs
Bengaluru FC are back in the ranks of Asian football as the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup action resumes after almost a fortnight. Bengaluru FC will travel to neighbouring nation Bangladesh as Abahani Dhaka Limited host them at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka.
Albert Roca will have his task cut out for the match as the Bengaluru FC have to win at any cost to have any hopes of going through to the inter-zonal playoff semifinal.
The Blues lost to Dhivehi Premier League champions New Radiant SC away in Maldives that saw their 6-match unbeaten streak since the Super Cup snap and they fell to the second spot in the Group E of the AFC Cup.
Bengaluru FC will be dependent on the result from the other match between New Radiant SC and fellow Indian club Aizawl FC to qualify for the next round.
Bengaluru coach Albert Roca will put out a strong and stable lineup keeping in mind the importance of the match. They smashed Aizawl FC 5-1 in their previous match and will count on their attack to fire in a similar manner with the trio of Sunil Chhetri, Udanta Singh and Spaniard striker Daniel Segovia.
Erik Paartalu will operate in the midfield alongside Victor Perez and Boithang Haokip will operate as a support on the wings for Udanta Singh. Bengaluru's defence has been a strong component of their run in the AFC with just three goals conceded so far. They will hope to churn out a comfortable win in Dhaka to keep the pressure on New Radiant SC.
Here is how Bengaluru FC may lineup:
Sandhu; Bose, Juanan, Bheke, Nishu; Perez, Paartalu, Haokip, Chhetri, Udanta, Segovia.
The Bangladesh Football Premier League champions Abahani Dhaka have won just one match in the AFC Cup this year with a victory over Aizawl FC. They were beaten 5-1 by New Radiant SC away in the Maldives and have only four points in the Group E.
They will be playing for pride with the final match at home in Dhaka. Abahani will likely stick to their 4-2-3-1 setup with Nigerian striker Emeka Onuoha leading the attack with the midfield trio of Nabib Jibon, Seiya Kojima and Nwadialu in support.
Here is how Abahani Dhaka may lineup:
Alam; Faisal, Hasan, Alison, Uddin; Mahmud, Fahad, Nwadialu, Kojima, Jibon, Onuoha.
Abahani Dhaka 1-3 Bengaluru FC
Bengaluru FC will come into the game in high spirits and motivated to clinch all the three points from the match. They want to make it as tough as possible for New Radiant SC and hope that they drop points against Aizawl FC.