Under-20 I-League: Pune FC has a score to settle against Salgaocar FC
Having suffered a 1-2 reverse to the Goans a week ago at the JRD Complex, the memory remains is vivid and the aim on mind is set on getting even.
Pune FC Head of Youth Development, Ranjan Chowdhury, is simplistic. “It’s a very vital match tomorrow,” he adds.
While Chowdhury singles out the winning start (v Sesa FA) and a change in venue as reasons to begin afresh, his aim is to have a clean run in the first three rounds.
“The target is to earn another three points. All the teams have one point each and our target is to earn nine points from the first three matches,” he adds.
On the match on the morrow, the Youth Head is confident. “All players are mentally prepared to give their best. They know the team’s collective mission and will be out to fight.”
Having set an agenda for the game on hand, Pune FC has a host of yellow cards as a major concern ahead of selecting their squad. To begin with, Pune FC will miss central midfielder Rinte and defender Anuj Negi.
Rinte serves a one-match suspension for a double-booking, while Anuj sits out after being shown a red card in the opening game against Sesa FA.
Apart from the suspensions, Pune FC has six other players carry forward yellow cards from previous games.
Having put the team through an early morning workout at the Gopal Stadium, Chowdhury added, “Two important players (Rinte and, Anuj) will be missed. The show must go on and there is nothing that we can do but to tell the players to be careful. It’s the final phase of the tournament and the intensity will always be high. We are hoping for the best.”
Given the options Chowdhury has on hand, the likelihood of Riyan Yadgiri adding into the defence and Abung Meetei joining the midfield are the only options. Likewise, adding into the 18 for tomorrow will be the return of wing-back Narendra Vakhare and wing-half Rugved Yeole.
Pune FC Youth Head adds, “We will not give any opportunity for the opponents to dominate us in any area.”
The match kicks-off at 3.00 pm.