Mohun Bagan will be hoping to script their first victory in the Calcutta Football League this season after a 0-3 shocking loss to Peerless in their opening fixture. Even though they won against ATK by a 2-1 margin in the Durand Cup last week, the 30-time champions will be on high alert when they face a promising Calcutta Customs side at their club ground on Wednesday afternoon.
Mohun Bagan has a very strong side on paper with their Spanish players adding glamour to the squad. But coach Kibu Vicuna is yet to get the correct combination this season. Especially his back four, which is the root cause of all the worries in the Bagan camp. Even though Mohun Bagan won 2-0 against Mohammedan Sporting Club in the Durand Cup opener, a lot of flaws were visible in their game.
The loopholes amplified in their Calcutta Football League clash against Peerless, which ended in a 0-3 defeat. The Mariners also conceded a late goal in their last match against ATK, which was a result of a defensive lapse. Kibu Vicuna might play two foreigners in the centre back position to be on the safer side in the weekday kick-off as Indian stoppers like Sukhdev Singh and Gurjiner Kumar have been disappointing so far.
Among the foreigners, Joseba Beitia has by far been their best player on the pitch, while Fran Morante has been clinical with his defensive duties. Fran Gonzalez has been swapped around in position, having played both as a midfielder and a central defender. Indian players like Romario Jesuraj and Nongdomba Noarem also need to step up to the occasion to cement their place in the squad.
Calcutta Customs is also looking for their first win in the Calcutta Football League. Having beaten Kalighat MS 1-2 last month, they managed to fetch a point from their last fixture against Bhawanipore. It may sound surprising that the minnows might stage an upset, but the recent trend will bring a smile to their face. The big teams have been tamed by the smaller ones in the league so far, can Calcutta Customs pull off something special?
Fran Morante (Mohun Bagan)
The Spanish defender did not feature in the match against Peerless, but he showed character whenever he was fielded by the Spanish coach. He even scored the opening goal for Bagan in their last match versus ATK in the Durand Cup. Desperate for a win, Kibu Vicuna will vest the responsibility of the defence on Morante’s shoulder giving him more minutes will allow him to get into the scheme of things in the Bagan line-up.
Stanley (Calcutta Customs)
The forward has been the main backbone of the squad this season. It is not going to amaze anyone if Stanley strikes one or two against the ‘green and maroon’ brigade in the upcoming fixture.
Mohun Bagan vs Calcutta Customs
Date: 14 August 2019
Kick-off: 3:00 PM IST
Live Stream: Sadhna News Bengali, Sadhna News YouTube Channel
Venue: Mohun Bagan Ground
Mohun Bagan will go all guns blazing against Calcutta Customs on their home turf. But their defence line needs to be well organized or they could be punished once again.
Score prediction: Mohun Bagan 3-1 Calcutta Customs.