Preview Match 68: Chennaiyin FC look to enter top four against struggling NorthEast United FC
Chennaiyin FC and NorthEast United FC will lock horns in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-2022 on Saturday at the PJN Stadium in Fatorda, Goa.
Earlier in the season, Chennaiyin FC registered a narrow 2-1 victory against NorthEast United. Currently, Khalid Jamil’s side sits at the bottom of the league table and is in search of their first win in 2022. Chenniayin FC, on the other hand, are comfortably placed seventh, only two points adrift of Mumbai City FC, who sit fourth.
Both teams come into the game on the back of indifferent form, meaning that this match could potentially act as a launchpad to climb higher up the Hero ISL points table.
Chennaiyin FC: DLWLL
Bozidar Bandovic's side has won one, drawn one and lost three of their previous five games. After a disappointing draw in their previous match against Hyderbad FC, Chennaiyin FC would want to get back to winning ways.
NorthEast United FC: LDLDLThe Guwahati-based team enters the game in terrible form, having not won a match in four weeks. With only eight fixtures remaining, the Highlanders would want to use this encounter as a starting point for a strong end to the season.
The teams have historically proven to be tough to separate, with five draws in 15 matches. Of the 10 games that have produced a result, NorthEast United FC have emerged victorious six times, with the Marina Machans winning on four occasions.
Vladimir Koman and Ariel Borysiuk will be available for selection for Chennaiyin FC, with the pair returning from injury. The rest of the squad is also available for selection.
Goal scoring woes
Chennaiyin FC's goal-scoring struggles have continued this season and they have scored just 10 goals in their 11 Hero ISL games. They are averaging less than a goal a game this campaign and they would want to rectify it at the earliest.
Northeast United FC
Highlanders' defensive struggles in open play
NorthEast United FC have conceded 21 goals from open play this season, which is the highest among any side in the Hero ISL.
The 31-year-old has been one of the best attackers for the Marina Machans, scoring two goals and bagging two assists. With the Chennai-based team having scored the least number of goals in the league, his offensive output could be crucial against NEUFC.
He has been one of the best players for Chennaiyin FC this season. The dynamic midfielder has averaged 6.18 tackles and interceptions per 90 minutes, making him one of the best defensive midfielders in the league.
NorthEast United FC
Suhair Vadakkepeedika has the most goal contributions, i.e., five goals and assists, for NorthEast United FC. Additionally, his 59 tackles in 12 games makes him very tough to play against, and he will be crucial against Chennaiyin FC.
The Spanish midfielder has been sensational for the Highlanders this season. His immense defensive output of over six tackles and interceptions per 90 minutes, makes him a tough proposition to tackle and he could be the difference between a NorthEast United FC victory and another defeat.
Match Timings and Telecast
Match: Chennaiyin FC vs NorthEast United FC.
Date: 22nd January 2022.
Venue: PJN Satdium, Goa.
Kick-off Time: 7:30 P.M.
Telecast: Star Sports Network
Online Streaming: Disney+Hotstar and JioTV.