The Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 playoffs reach a fever pitch as FC Goa prepares to host Chennaiyin FC in a high-stakes knockout clash at the iconic Fatorda Stadium on Saturday April 20, 2024, at 7:30 pm IST. With a direct qualification to the semi-finals hanging in the balance, both teams are gearing up for a battle that promises to be nothing short of exhilarating.

Recent Form: FC Goa enters the fixture on the back of an impressive run (45 points from their 22 matches), having secured victories in four out of their last five matches. Their commanding performance against Chennaiyin FC in their recent encounter, where they emerged triumphant with a 4-1 scoreline, underscores their current form and confidence.

Contrastingly, Chennaiyin FC, despite experiencing a setback in their previous fixture against FC Goa, have demonstrated resilience throughout the season. With wins in three of their last five matches, they are poised to bounce back and pose a formidable challenge to their opponents.

What’s at stake?

FC Goa

  • FC Goa fare well against Chennaiyin FC, having won five of their last six matches against them, and keeping a clean sheet in four of those victories. The Gaurs have found the back of the net in each of their previous 14 matches against the Marina Machans, and only against Kerala Blasters FC do have a longer active scoring streak, i.e. of 19 games.
  • FC Goa now have won four matches in a row, and their last longer run like this was a stretch of five encounters from January-February 2020. Their 52 strikes against Chennaiyin FC is the most goals that a team has netted against any opposition in the ISL. They put up an absolute show in the last match, and one can expect similar fireworks, or at least intent to pull off the same in the forthcoming fixture as well.

Chennaiyin FC 

  • Prior to their defeat in the last game against the Gaurs, Chennaiyin FC had scored at least two goals or more in each of their three prior matches in the ISL. Chennaiyin FC have often brought their A-game to the table in the knockouts, having won six playoffs matches in the tournament, which is the joint-highest amongst all teams along with Bengaluru FC (6).
  • Before his latest 4-1 loss, the Scottish manager held only a 20% win rate against Marquez, which suggests that the latter has devised a way to unlock Coyle’s team consistently over the last few years. The Marina Machans might rely on their frontline to push FC Goa back in the coming match. For instance, Jordan Murray has won 5.15 duels per match, and his contributions in the coming contest will be vital to determine Chennaiyin FC’s prospects too.

Key Players to Watch Out

Brandon Fernandes (FC Goa)

Brandon Fernandes bagged his first goal of the ISL season in their last match against Chennaiyin FC. Overall, he has netted once and bagged four assists in 17 matches in this campaign.

He has averaged 33 passes per game at 79% accuracy and has also delivered 50 key passes in addition to creating 54 goal-scoring opportunities. He has completed 14 successful dribbles, won 66 duels, made two clearances and interceptions each, and also made 80 recoveries. He seemed to be in his groove in the last match and will be edging to tease the Chennaiyin FC defence and derive some concrete outcomes for his side.

Rafael Crivellaro (Chennaiyin FC)

Rafael Crivellaro is the creator-in-chief of the Chennaiyin FC unit, constantly hovering around the final third, getting into pockets of spaces, finding teammates in scoring positions, and supplying them with precise passes.

The Brazilian has scored four goals and notched seven assists in 21 appearances this season. He has averaged 26 passes per game at 72% accuracy, creating 42 goal-scoring opportunities, completing 27 successful dribbles, making 35 key passes, putting in 22 clearances and 79 recoveries as well. Crivellaro has won 15 aerial duels and Chennaiyin FC will bank heavily on him to deliver adequate returns with the stakes at an all-time high in this match.

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Played – 26

FC Goa – 15

Chennaiyin FC – 9

Draws – 2

Trivia: FC Goa attacker Noah Sadaoui has scored two goals in four appearances in the ISL against Chennaiyin FC.

Team Talk

“It’s true that FC Goa have never been the champions in the playoffs. The Shield was the most important, as winning it gives a spot in Asia straightaway. However, it’s (playoffs) also a tournament (that we must focus on) at the end of the day,” FC Goa Head Coach Manolo Marquez said in the pre-match press conference, saying that the team needs to place equal importance on the playoffs. 

“The FC Goa team that we faced in season six was one of the best ever teams in the ISL, and we managed to oust them across two legs in the semi-finals. That has no bearing in tomorrow’s match but our real focus is to give our absolute best,” Chennaiyin FC Head Coach Owen Coyle said prior to the match.

ISL Fantasy

Noah Sadaoui (8.9cr)

Has garnered 104 ISL fantasy points this season

Carlos Martinez (6.3cr)

Has collected 22 ISL fantasy points in the last two matchweeks

Rafael Crivellaro (6.4cr)

Has been picked by 36% of the ISL fantasy users in their teams

If not registered already, fans can participate in the overall league or club-based leagues based on their preferences. Create private leagues, inviting friends and fellow football aficionados to compete. Prizes include a Sony PlayStation ®️ ️5 gaming console, EA Sports FC 24, signed club merchandise, and a Gift Card worth INR 20,000, which will be awarded to 100 winners at the end of the season. Sign up at:

Where to Watch

Fans across the country can catch the action in English, Hindi, Bengali, and Malayalam. Fans can watch the action on linear channels like Sports18 Khel (Hindi), Sports18 1 HD (English), Sports18 3 SD (English, Hindi, Malayalam and Bengali), VH1 SD & HD (English), Surya Movies (Malayalam), News 18 Kerala (Malayalam – select matches) & DD Bangla (Bengali). Fans can also catch the action streaming Live for free on JioCinema, the home of Indian football. In addition to this, as part of FSDL’s partnership with OneFootball, ISL live streams and highlights of all matches of the upcoming 2023-24 season will be delivered across more than 190 countries.