Mumbai City FC secured their second consecutive semi-final spot this season finishing second in the Indian Super League (ISL) table, just a point below ISL 2023-24 League Shield winners Mohun Bagan Super Giant. 

The Islanders have been one of the most consistent sides in the ISL since it was acquired by the City Football Group in 2020, missing the playoffs spot only once, in the 2021-22 season. In 2020-21 they had bagged themselves the League Shield and the ISL Cup, becoming the only to achieve the feat in a single season.

Following Lobera’s exit in 2021, came Des Buckingham at the helm of Mumbai City FC. Although the Englishman couldn’t lead his team to the playoffs in his first season, he did reward them with the League Shield win in the ISL 2022-23 season.

However, midway through the ISL 2023-24 season, Buckingham stepped down from his position having kept his team unbeaten till then, allowing the assignment of Petr Kratky as the new head coach of Mumbai City FC. 

Since his arrival, the Islanders have gone on to lose just three matches, including the League Shield decider, but a consistent overall performance helped them get a direct semi-final spot with a top-two finish to the league season.

Key Stats in ISL 2023-24 season

Matches: 22, Wins: 14, Draws: 5, Losses: 3, Goals scored: 40, goals conceded: 20, Goal Difference: +23, Points: 47, League Position: 2nd

Tactical profile

Petr Kratky has rejuvenated the Islanders defensively, while maintaining their possession-based playing style, utilizing the width of the pitch. 

Mumbai City FC have faced the least shots (231) and also the fewest amongst those on target (64) so far, while keeping the third-most clean sheets in the tournament (8) this season. 

The Czech-Australian has improved on their prospect in the wings putting his faith in Indian talents like Lallianzuala Chhangte and Vikram Partap Singh. However, even more impressively, Kratky has solidified the team’s base, developing them into the team with the joint-fewest number of losses (3) this season along with FC Goa, making them a big threat in the playoffs.  

The 42-year-old has mostly relied on his fluidic 4-1-4-1 formation with Jorge Pereyra Diaz playing the role of a sole striker in recent matches. But in certain matches, Kratky has also relied on the traditional 4-3-3 formation with Chhangte and Vikram playing through the wings as a provider for Diaz. The Argentine though will be suspended for the first leg of the semi-final, so new signing Jakub Vojtus could start in his place.

Mumbai City FC have a strong bench allowing them to tweak their starting lineup in accordance with each match, sometimes, allowing Bipin Singh to replace Vikram, or Vinit Rai and Jayesh Rane to control the midfield.

With Rahul Bheke expected to lead the backline, van Nieff will be the favourite for the central defensive midfielder role. Chhangte and Vikram are the other key players in the side. 


Solid defence: The Islanders have conceded the least goals in the ISL 2023-24 season, giving away only 19 goals in the competition. The backline underwent a massive transition this season, with Mourtada Fall leaving for Odisha FC and Rostyn Griffiths saying goodbye mid-season. Mumbai City FC have faced the least shots (231) and also the fewest amongst those on target (64) so far. They have also kept the third-most clean sheets in the tournament (8).

Creativity: Mumbai City FC entered the playoffs creating the third most chances (216) in the league stage this season, displaying remarkable creativity and consistency.

Shot conversion: With a shot conversion rate of 13.42%, Mumbai City FC registered the third-highest shot conversion rate in the league stage this season. They have also registered the third-most number of shots on target (109) this season.


Troubles away from home against tyop teams: In the ISL 2023-24 season, Mumbai City FC have only managed to score only three goals away from home against the top five teams in the league stage, only managing an away win against Chennaiyin FC amongst the teams that qualified for the playoffs. They have lost the other two and drawn the remaining that includes a 0-0 draw away to their semi-final opponents FC Goa.

Player to watch out for: Vikram Partap Singh

The 22-year-old has been in excellent form in the second half of the league season, taking his tally for this season to 10 goal contributions, including seven goals and three assists in 20 matches.

With his remarkable hat-trick against NorthEast United FC, Vikram has not only established himself as the only Indian to score a hat-trick this season, but also the second youngest player to bag a hat-trick in the history of ISL.

Vikram’s excellent positioning in the opposition’s box is bound to threaten FC Goa as the two sides meet on April 24 and April 29.

Records and Unique Stats

  • Mumbai City FC have registered the second-highest points (47) in ISL history this season, which is also their highest-ever points tally in ISL. Only Mohun Bagan SG have managed a point more than that to take home the League Shield this season. 
  • Both Mohun Bagan Super Giant and Mumbai City FC have had 15 different goal scorers in the ISL this season, the joint-most for any team in a single season in ISL history.
  • Lallianzuala Chhangte (Mumbai City FC) has scored and assisted at least one goal each in six matches in the Indian Super League, the most by any Indian player in ISL.
  • At 22 years and 56 days of age, Vikram Partap Singh became the second youngest player ever to score a hat-trick in the Indian Super League with his triple against NorthEast United FC (Kiyan Nassiri – 21y 73d); he is also the only Indian, and third player overall, to score a hat-trick in the ongoing ISL season.

Probable starting XI: Phurba Lachenpa, Mehtab Singh, Rahul Bheke (C), Tiri, Akash Mishra, Yoell van Nieff, Apuia, Alberto Noguera, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Vikram Partap Singh, Jakub Vojtus