Mumbai City FC host Chennaiyin FC in a crunch ISL clash at the Mumbai Football Arena on Friday, with the winner taking the last available playoff spot, joining league winners FC Goa, ATK and Bengaluru FC in the last four.
Mumbai are in iffy form, having been dismantled by FC Goa in their last game, but Jorge Costa's men also recently played out a draw against Hyderabad FC, which they could come to regret when the season ends.
Chennaiyin comprehensively beat ATK 3-1 in their last game, held at the Salt Lake Stadium. Goals from Rafael Crivellaro, Andre Schembri and Nerijus Valskis gave Coyle's men the victory on that night.
Chennaiyin will go for the win for sure, but a draw suits them more than it does Mumbai, with the Islanders only a point ahead and Chennaiyin having a game in hand, away to NorthEast United.
Mumbai City FC v Chennaiyin FC: Match information
Date: 21st February 2020
Kickoff: 7:30 PM IST
Live Stream: Star Sports Network and Hotstar
Venue: Mumbai Football Arena
Mumbai City FC v Chennaiyin FC: Team news
Mumbai have Sarthak Golui and Serge Kevyn ruled out for the season. Mohammad Rafique has deputised at right-back in recent games, and should continue there.
The big boost for Jorge Costa is having Amine Chermiti back from suspension to lead his attack, and the Tunisian top-scorer for Mumbai will be itching to drive his side into the playoffs.
Chennaiyin have no injuries or suspensions to worry about which means Owen Coyle can keep faith in his preferred line-up, which dismantled ATK at the Salt Lake Stadium last time around.
Mumbai City FC v Chennaiyin FC: Probable lineups
Mumbai City FC: Amrinder Singh, Mohammad Rafique, Pratik Chaudhari, Mato Grgic, Subhasish Bose, Sourav Das, Rowllin Borges, Mohamed Larbi, Diego Carlos, Modou Sougou, Amine Chermiti
Chennaiyin FC: Vishal Kaith, Laldinliana Renthlei, Lucian Goian, Eli Sabia, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Edwin Sydney Vanspaul, Anirudh Thapa, Rafael Crivellaro, Andre Schembri, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Nerijus Valskis.
Mumbai City FC v Chennaiyin FC: ISL form guide
Mumbai City FC: L-W-W-D-W
Chennaiyin FC: W-D-W-W-W
Mumbai City FC v Chennaiyin FC head-to-head
This will be the 12th time the two sides lock horns, with Chennaiyin holding a slight upper hand in the historical meetings between the two.
However, Jorge Costa has never lost to Chennaiyin, having steered the Islanders to a double over the two-time former champions last season and a 0-0 draw in the reverse fixture at the Marina Arena earlier this season.
Mumbai City FC wins - 4
Chennaiyin FC wins - 5
Draws - 2
Mumbai City FC v Chennaiyin FC prediction
Chennaiyin are never short of goals these days, but they still do possess some weaknesses defensively. In Chermiti and Valskis, both teams possess outstanding goal-scorers in their ranks. That's why we're going for a high-scoring draw, which will put Chennaiyin in pole position to qualify for the playoffs.
Prediction: Mumbai City FC 2-2 Chennaiyin FC