ISL 2019/20: Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC | Match preview, predicted lineups and live streaming details
After a win on opening day against ATK, Kerala Blasters are back in Indian Super League action on Thursday night in Kochi, when they take on Mumbai City FC, who open their 2019-20 campaign, looking to build on their semifinal run from last season.
The Blasters, who rode on Bartholomew Ogbeche's brace to beat ATK in the opening game, will know, though, that their performance levels will have to be much higher on Thursday, if they are to start the season with six points from their first two games.
Mumbai, on the other hand, will be looking to start on a positive note, and if they can get a result in a hostile environment like Kochi is sure to provide, it will provide them with the perfect fillip to build their season going forward.
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: Match Information
Date: 24 October 2019
Kickoff: 7:30 PM IST
Live Stream: Star Sports Network and Hotstar
Venue: Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium, Kochi
Live Commentary: Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: Team News
There are no injury concerns for either side, with Kerala likely to welcome back Sahal Abdul Samad into the starting line-up. Sahal started the game against ATK on the bench, and that is presumably because he had played for India in their FIFA World Cup qualifier against Bangladesh just five days before that game.
Manager Eelco Schattorie has, though, repeatedly stressed on the need to stay patient with Sahal, and not expect too much too soon, so it will be interesting to see if he sticks with the combination that he played in the first game when Jeakson Singh had a middling performance.
For Mumbai, young centre-back Anwar Ali has taken a leave of absence after the detection of a heart problem, which has ruled him out of action for the foreseeable future. That aside, there should be club debuts for new signings Amine Chermiti, Mohamed Larbi, Mato Grgic and Rowllin Borges.
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: Probable Lineups
Kerala Blasters FC: Bilal Khan, Mohammad Rakip, Gianni Zuiverloon, Jairo Rodriguez, Jessel Carneiro, Moustapha Gning, Sahal Abdul Samad, Sergio Cidoncha, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Halicharan Narzary, Bartholomew Ogbeche
Mumbai City FC: Amrinder Singh, Sauvik Chakrabarti, Sarthak Golui, Mato Grgic, Subhasish Bose, Rowllin Borges, Raynier Fernandes, Paulo Machado, Mohamed Larbi, Amine Chermiti, Modou Sougou
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: ISL Form Guide
Kerala Blasters FC: W-D-L-W-D
Mumbai City FC: W-L-L-W-L
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: Head-to-Head
Kerala Blasters FC: 2 wins
Mumbai City FC: 3 wins
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: Key Players
Kerala Blasters FC: Bartholomew Ogbeche showed on opening day just how lethal he could be, with a brace to help Kerala to a win. The two goals were expertly taken, the first being a firmly struck penalty into the corner, but that second will stay in the memory for a while. He received the ball on the edge of the box, and with barely any warning, unleashed a drive past Arindam Bhattacharya and into the top corner. He will have to have a big game for Kerala once again.
Mumbai City FC: It's going to be a battle of the strikers on Thursday night, as Modou Sougou turns up for his first taste of ISL action this season. Sougou finished level on the top-scorers chart with Ogbeche last season, and he'll be looking to start in a similar vein to what Ogbeche has done.
Kerala Blasters FC v Mumbai City FC: Predictions
This has been a very draw-hungry fixture in the past few seasons, and it could well end up being a similar result on Thursday. Although they won their first game, the Blasters had their fair share of problems and would've been staring at a worse result if ATK took any of the many chances that they had.
Mumbai, meanwhile, know that it's a tough away trip to have first up, and they will only be too happy to take the point.
Prediction: Kerala Blasters FC 1-1 Mumbai City FC