ISL 2018-19: Mumbai City vs Kerala Blasters: A pre-match reportLast updated on Dec 16, 2018, 01:17 pm
In tonight's Indian Super League (ISL) encounter, second-placed Mumbai City will take on Kerala Blasters at their home.
Kerala have seen a huge backlash from their supporters since they haven't been performing as well as expected, whereas Mumbai are second on the league table.
Mumbai will be wanting to increase their points difference from the third and fourth-placed sides to avoid unwarranted incidents.
How are the two teams shaping up for the tournament?
Mumbai have no injury/suspension concerns except Sehnaj Singh and will deploy a full squad in the 4-3-3 formation.
Subashish Bose being used as a left-back and Goian-Lourenco's partnership as-center backs have made Mumbai's defense pretty effective.
Kerala's Nikola Krcmarevic, Loken Meitei are injured, which will add problems to the team on a ten-match winless streak.
They can line up in the 4-2-3-1 formation.
Predicted line-up and TV listing
Mumbai City FC: Amrinder; Souvik, Goian, Lourenco, Bose; Machado, Milan, Raynier; Issoko, Sougou, Bastos.
Kerala Blasters: Dheeraj; Jhingan, Anas, Lakic-Pesic, Kali; Zakeer, Samad; Doungel, Poplatnik, Pekuson; Stojanovic.
The match is scheduled to kick-off at 7:30 PM, and can be watched on the Star Sports network or live-streamed on Hotstar or JioTV.
Key players and important pointers for the match
Mumbai will look forward to Sougou for goals - despite being ruled offside frequently, he has managed to net in five goals this season.
Sehnaj's absence could be a major setback for Mumbai as he has been a strong defensive player for them.
Poplatnik and Jhingan will be Kerala's key players, but the Southerners missing chances will be a concern.
Thoughts on the possible outcomes of the match
Nothing but miracle can save Kerala from losing, as their form this term is terrible to say the least.
David James' side need to win this encounter to at least restore some of the pride they have lost this season.
Mumbai have the home advantage, and the consistency, and Kerala will have to come up with something special to overcome this massive hurdle.
How does the league table look like?
Mumbai winning this fixture with one match in hand can secure their second spot on the league table for the near future.
If Kerala win, they jump to the seventh spot, displacing Pune.
Bengaluru are still comfortably perched on the top with 27 points to their name, and unless a major mishap occurs, will be qualifying for the playoffs as the number one team.