Mumbai host Goa as both sides search for consistency
Match 17 of Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2019-20 will see Mumbai City FC welcome FC Goa to the Mumbai Football Arena on Thursday. Both sides started their respective campaigns with a win but have failed to secure maximum points from each of their last two fixtures. The Gaurs, though, are in a slightly better place with two draws and five points from their three games so far.
Adding to that will their vastly superior head-to-head record over Mumbai. In 12 matches with their western neighbors, the Gaurs have averaged two goals a game, whilst conceding just under one per fixture.
Jorge Costa’s men enjoyed a terrific start to the season, beating the mighty Kerala Blasters 1-0 away from home. The performance was symbolic of what the Islanders have become under the Portuguese head coach, as they displayed tremendous tenacity, togetherness and lethal pace on the break.
However, that wasn’t the case in their next two fixtures, where Costa’s men picked up just a single point. The signs were especially ominous against Odisha, when Aridane Santana and Jerry Mawhmingthanga ran through the Mumbai defence with alarming regularity.
The absence of Rowllin Borges and Mato Grgic was evident in that fixture and Costa, will have to do without Borges once again with the midfielder set to miss out the game against Goa as well. In the attacking-third, the likes of Diego Carlos, Serge Kevyn and Amine Chermiti are yet to find their feet and will have a tough task against a formidable Gaurs defence. The Islanders could also opt to unleash Chermiti and Modou Sougou as a pair to counter Goa’s attacking instincts.
Like their neighbors, Goa haven’t enjoyed the best of results in their previous two outings. They began their campaign on a sound note, beating Chennaiyin FC 3-0 at home. However, the Gaurs haven’t looked near as fluid since, picking up just two points from the next two fixtures.
On both occasions, Lobera’s men relied on an injury-time equaliser to earn a share of the points, and although that shows the team’s never-say-die attitude, they will be looking to find the back of the net much sooner than that.
Hugo Boumous got his name on the scoresheet in the last match, while striker Manvir Singh has been one of Goa’s better players this season. The 23-year-old scored their second goal against NorthEast United after coming off the bench last time around and demonstrated his versatility by allowing Ferran Corominas the freedom to operate in vacant areas. Given the way Mumbai like play, Lobera could use both Manvir and Corominas up top, with the Spaniard playing just behind the Indian international.
Mumbai City FC: Amrinder Singh (GK), Pratik Chaudhari, Subhasish Bose, Sarthak Golui, Valpuia, Mohammed Rafique, Raynier Fernandes, Paulo Machado, Serge Kevyn, Mohamed Larbi, Amine Chermiti
FC Goa: Mohammad Nawaz (GK), Carlos Pena, Seriton Fernandes, Mourtada Fall, Mandar Rao Dessai, Lenny Rodrigues, Ahmed Jahouh, Brandon Fernandes, Hugo Boumous, Ferran Corominas, Manvir Singh
DID YOU KNOW?
- Mumbai are yet to score in the first half this season.
- The Islanders have conceded five or more goals five times in the Hero ISL. Three of those have come against FC Goa.
- Ferran Corominas has five goals in six matches against Mumbai.
Amine Chermiti or Ferran Corominas – which of the two strikers will score first in the fixture?
Have your say in the comments section below.
Live broadcast schedule:
Hero ISL 2019-20 Match 17: Mumbai City FC vs FC Goa
Time: 7:30 PM onwards, November 7th
Channels: Star Sports Network
Streaming: Hotstar and Jio TV