The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) returns to the historical city of Indian Football to host a riveting clash between ATK Mohun Bagan and Chennaiyin FC at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan Stadium, Kolkata, on 10th October, Monday.

The Mariners will be looking to put up a show and bag all three points in front of the returning fans while Chennayin FC will take the stage after a complete squad overhaul, aiming for their first win against ATK Mohun Bagan.

ATK Mohun Bagan scored 30 goals from open play last season, the highest of any side while Chennaiyin FC finished with a total of 17 goals, the lowest of any side. This was the second successive season the Marina Machans finished with 17 goals.

Reinforcements have been brought in to strengthen the ATK Mohun Bagan backline. Asish Rai, Florentin Pogba and Brendan Hamill are expected to bolster the defence of the Green and Maroon Brigade. Vishal Kaith, who has kept 12 clean sheets for Chennaiyin FC in the Hero ISL, has also been roped in by ATKMB.

We have to keep trust in the players, the team, ourselves, and the football we play: ATK Mohun Bagan head coach Juan Ferrando

“All matches will be difficult. Our mentality is to improve day by day, to try and find solutions when we find problems and to play football”, said coach Juan Ferrando. “Solutions in this game are easy - try to play football, try to find space and be more effective in front of the goal”, the Spaniard added.

The absence of the attacking duo of Roy Krishna and David Williams may affect the attacking prowess of the team. However, Liston Colaco and Manvir Singh scored 14 goals between them last season and seem capable of taking the attacking onus on their shoulders. In addition to that, ATK Mohun Bagan have also signed attackers Ashique Kuruniyan and Dimitri Petratos.

Chennaiyin FC have been quite active in the transfer market. The two-time Hero ISL champions have appointed a new coach and signed six new foreign players. A plethora of Indian players, including defensive midfielder Jitheshwor Singh, who won the Hero I-League Emerging Player of the Year last season, have also been brought into the squad.

“I like offensive football. I like to score. This is what we want to implement in the game. Also, of course, I understand how we have to defend and both these topics are very important in professional football”, said coach Thomas Brdaric. “In modern football, you have to run on both sides”, added the 47-year-old.

To exploit ATK Mohun Bagan’s weaknesses, we must be at our best: Chennaiyin FC head coach Thomas Brdaric

Fallou Diagne and Vafa Hakamaneshi are the new foreign centre-backs of the Marina Machans. Julius Duker is their foreign central midfield acquisition while Kwame Karikari and Petar Sliskovic are the two foreign strikers signed by the club. Duker, Karikari and Sliskovic have already made their impact during the Durand Cup 2022.

Along with NorthEast United, Chennaiyin FC are the only side whose foreign players will be experiencing the Hero ISL for the first time as the new season kicks off.

ATK Mohun Bagan have two wins and two draws in their four Hero ISL games against

Chennaiyin FC. The Green and Maroon Brigade are one of the two teams against whom the Machans are yet to win a game against in the Hero ISL along with East Bengal.