Mumbai seek redemption against Goa as the two face off in crunch tie
High-flying Mumbai City FC face a free-scoring FC Goa side in what promises to be a thrilling encounter at the Mumbai Football Arena on Friday. When the two sides last met back in September, Goa emerged as emphatic 5-0 winners putting the Islanders to the sword. Since then Mumbai have gone on a nine-match unbeaten streak and currently occupy the second spot in the standings. Goa, meanwhile, are in the fourth spot. With form on their side, Mumbai will be eager to get one over the Gaurs and avenge the drubbing from earlier in the season.
Sentiments, however, will not be the only motivation in the encounter. The outcome of the match may very well have a big impact on the top four race, making it an enticing tie.
After an impressive showing last week, where they ended Bengaluru FC’s unbeaten streak with a 1-0 victory, the confidence in the Mumbai camp will be soaring. The Islanders are having one of their best season’s to date under Jorge Costa. If they can remain undefeated in their next two matches, they will equal Bengaluru’s 11-match unbeaten streak – the longest in the league’s history and the same one they broke last week.
Paulo Machado once again proved his worth when he scored the decisive goal against Bengaluru. The midfielder has been one of the league’s outstanding players this season and could hold the key to the Islanders' success against Goa. Another impressive aspect of Mumbai this season has been in defence. With Amrinder Singh between the sticks, they have registered seven clean sheets – the most in the league by any team. Amrinder also has the distinction of making the most number of saves in the league with 35. Given their splendid form, Goa are going to have their hands full on Friday.
On the flipside, there are niggling doubts over the fitness of star striker Modou Sougou. He had to be substituted after sustaining an injury in their last match against Bengaluru and Mumbai fans will be hoping that the Senegalese forward recovers in time for the match.
Here’s a look at Mumbai’s current season in numbers:
While they might be one of the most free-scoring teams in the league, Goa will be approaching this encounter with plenty of caution. The Gaurs were denied a chance to leapfrog NorthEast United FC when they drew against Jamshedpur. With their playoff chances on the line, the Gaurs cannot afford to drop any more points.
Ahmed Jahouh will be expected to regain his place in the starting line-up against Mumbai. The midfielder was bought on for the last 15 minutes against Jamshedpur and made a difference with his pin-point passing. Ferran Corominas will continue his search for that all-important goal, which will take him ahead of Iain Hume in the all-time goal scorers list. The Spaniard did come close on a few occasions but some inspired goalkeeping from Subrata Paul ensured he did not get on the scoresheet.
The duel between Coro and Sougou, both of whom are frontrunners for this season’s Golden Boot, will be another interesting contest to watch out for from this match.
Here’s a look at Goa’s current season in numbers:
Mumbai City FC: Amrinder Singh (GK), Sauvik Chakrabarti, Lucian Goian, Anwar Ali, Subhasish Bose, Arnold Issoko, Raynier Fernandes, Milan Singh, Paulo Machado (C), Modou Sougou, Rafael Bastos
FC Goa: Mohammad Nawaz (GK), Seriton Fernandes, Mourtada Fall, Mohamed Ali, Mandar Rao Dessai (C), Ahmed Jahouh, Lenny Rodrigues, Brandon Fernandes, Edu Bedia, Hugo Boumous, Ferran Corominas
DID YOU KNOW?
- Goa have scored most goals in the league through crosses (12) while Mumbai have scored most goals from counter attacks (9).
- In the last 3 encounters between the two sides, 15 goals have been scored.
- Mumbai’s last loss came against Goa on October 24, 2018.
Which striker will get on the scoresheet?
- Modou Sougou
- Ferran Corominas
Have your say in the comments section below.
Catch the match live on the Star Sports Network, Hotstar and Jio TV at 7.30 PM.