I-League 2018-19: East Bengal and Mohun Bagan set to clash
The two giants of Kolkata, East Bengal and Mohun Bagan will be clashing today for the I-League encounter at Kolkata. This fixture is the biggest one in the Indian football calendar, and both clubs will be giving everything to triumph in this historical clash. Both parties, however, have not fared well in the competition so far. Here is our detailed match preview.
East Bengal are seventh in the league table, and all their hopes of performing well after acquiring a new coach and sponsors have gone down the drain. Alejandro Menendez, their Spanish manager, has been far from delivering the goods so far. East Bengal have a solid defense, and can cause problems for the Mariners if their fullbacks fire up on the occasion.
Though Mohun Bagan have better attackers than East Bengal, they are level on the league table, also with nine points. Henry Kisekka, and Aser Dipanda will be their key attacking options, with Sony Norde injured. Bagan have won two matches and scored just seven goals this term, and a victory over their arch-rivals will go a long way to boost their confidence.
East Bengal FC: Rakshit; Chullova, Acosta, Borja, Manoj; Didika, Aidara; Danmawia, Brandon; Jaime; Jobby. Mohun Bagan AC: Shilton; Arijit, Kingsley, Kimkima, Ambekar; Faiaz, Sourav, Kinowaki, Omar; Kisekka, Dipanda. The match starts at 5:00 PM and will be telecast on Star Sports 3, Hotstar, and Jio TV.
The match can literally go in either direction with both teams almost evenly matched in all respects. East Bengal will be confident as the highly skilful Jaime Colado makes his debut with the red and gold today. This derby means a lot to the fans and the intense atmosphere at Yuba Bharati Krirangan will be a huge factor in the match as well.
Chennai City are currently league-leaders with 17 points from seven matches and are being followed by Real Kashmir with 14 points from eight fixtures. The Kolkata teams have played just six matches each and two consecutive wins for either club can see them rise higher in the table. Defending champions Minerva Punjab are trailing at the fifth spot with 11 points from seven matches.