Hyderabad FC - the surprise semi-final entrants will be up against a star-studded ATK Mohun Bagan side in the first leg of the second semi-final of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-22 at the Athletic Stadium in Bambolim, Goa on Saturday evening.

The head-to-head record is swayed in the Mariners’ favour, with three wins to their name and the rest turning out to be draws. However, Hyderabad FC have been the better side this season, having missed out on the League Winners Shield by a whisker.

It will take a brave person to call this fixture but our Hero ISL experts have taken up the gauntlet and spelt out their predictions for the match:

Paul Masefield’s prediction: Hyderabad FC 2-1 ATK Mohun Bagan

ATK Mohun Bagan for the second season in a row, failing to win the shield on the final date is going to hurt and affect them I think mentally more than anything. And I think that they've got to get that out of the system as quickly as possible. The only problem is that they are coming up against one of the (best) sides of the season that has really, really excited us and they're going to be on a mission to go and get through to the finals.

I think (Bartholomew) Ogbeche has been in sterling form. The whole back line as well for Hyderabad FC have been fantastic. Joao (Victor), this  season in the middle of the park has been a real driving force, but with ATK Mohun Bagan and the depth of talents and the plethora of talent that they have, it's not going to be easy. I do see this one being another good game of football.

And when we say cagey and tight, it will be, but there will be opportunities. There was a little bit of needle in the league match when these two sides met. So we might see that spill over, which could be very, very interesting, but I just think that Hyderabad because of what they've done so far this season, may just nick this one. I think they might just have enough.

Erik Paartalu’s prediction: Hyderabad FC 2-2 ATK Mohun Bagan

I think we're going to see a team that's obviously had some salts put in their wounds - ATK Mohun Bagan. So, I think they're really, really burning from the other night’s result (loss to Jamshedpur FC). And you could see Juan Ferrando in the sidelines telling the players to watch Jamshedpur FC collect that winner's shield so I can see they'll come out with probably almost like a revenge on their minds.

Hopefully for them, it doesn't get the better of them emotionally, but I can see them coming out and going, you know, hell for leather against Hyderabad FC. I would've thought of Hyderabad FC to win this game, but just with the reaction after the game against Jamshedpur FC, I can see the possibility of ATK Mohun Bagan doing enough in the first leg, and then it will be up to Hyderabad FC to see if they can pull it back in the second.

John Gregory’s prediction: Hyderabad FC 1-1 ATK Mohun Bagan

No crowd so no “home” advantage for either team. From the coaches I would expect to be very cagey, about possibly being too adventurous. Similar pattern for ATK Mohun Bagan against Hyderabad FC, It will be a great match up with Bartholomew Ogbeche and Tiri going against each other. Again, I expect a draw in the first leg.

Hyderabad FC has never been this far before, they might have a few players experiencing this kind of high pressure game for the first time whereas many of the ATK Mohun Bagan players have played in many of these types of games and will probably not be overawed. Slight advantage to ATK Mohun Bagan.