Preview: Odisha FC, NorthEast United FC look to build momentum
The Juggernauts and the Highlanders eye their third win of the season.
Odisha FC will want to ride on their success after the comeback victory against Bengaluru FC as they host NorthEast United FC at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 on November 3, 2023. The Juggernauts scored thrice in front of the Blues on Tuesday and they have found the back of the net in each of their last eight encounters against the Highlanders.
Sergio Lobera will hope his forwards operate with similar fluency against Juan Pedro Benali’s men, who have lost each of their last four meetings with Odisha FC in the ISL. A defeat in the coming game will give the Highlanders their joint longest losing streak in the competition against a single opponent (Mumbai City FC - five defeats in a row between October 2016-November 2018), but Benali will take inspiration from his side’s late victory against Jamshedpur FC in the previous game.
What’s at stake?
The Juggernauts struck back and controlled the proceedings after conceding twice in the last match. Though glad with the spirit that they showed to bounce back in the proceedings, Odisha will want to avoid the defensive lapses that put them behind in the fixture. The Highlanders have scored the second-most goals (8) in the league so far, and they will be putting Lobera’s backline to the test.
NorthEast United FC
NorthEast United FC and their journey have been on an upward graph even before the season began, as evident with their semi-final finish in the Durand Cup. Their comeback win against Jamshedpur should instil confidence for them to take on an in-form Odisha unit in their backyard.
Amey Ranawade (Odisha FC)
Amey Ranawade scored the winner against Bengaluru and the fullback has a promising ISL record under Lobera’s watch. He has registered 1.76 interceptions, 1.65 tackles (with a 67% success rate), and made 1.15 clearances per game in 26 matches for the Spaniard. After a terrible injury last season, this campaign gives him the ideal opportunity to get back in the groove under a coach who optimises his potential.
Parthib Gogoi (NorthEast United FC)
Parthib Gogoi scored in each of the first three games this season but has not netted in the last couple of matches. He has had only one touch inside the opposition box in the previous two matches, as opposed to six in the first three fixtures of the season. His dribble success rate has also come down to 43% from 75% and Gogoi will be eager to deliver an impressive output in the coming game to boost his confidence before the international break.
Played – 18
Odisha FC – 8
NorthEast United FC – 5
Draws – 5
Trivia: Sergio Lobera’s teams have conceded an average of 1.25 goals per game in his 84 matches in the ISL.
“We need to try to find the balance between attack and defence. We are scoring a lot of goals, but we are also conceding a lot of goals. I like to play attacking football, but we need to find balance when we lose the ball, because we are conceding goals,” Odisha FC head coach Sergio Lobera admitted in the pre-match press conference, whilst stating that it is not possible to win every game by 3-2 like the previous match.
“For us, our objective is always the next game. We don’t think about the (international) break at the moment. Odisha is a great team with a very good coach and players. We will try our best to get the best result possible,” NorthEast United FC tactician Juan Pedro Benali simplified his team’s ambitions for the coming game.
Top picks & players to watch out for
Jerry Mawihmingthanga (6.3cr)
Jerry has scored twice and assisted once in ISL 2023-24
Amey Ranawade (4.2cr)
Bagged the winner in Odisha’s clash against Bengaluru
Parthib Gogoi (5.6cr)
Three goals in five appearances for the 20-year-old this season
Where to Watch
Viacom18 is the new home of Indian football and the match between Odisha FC and NorthEast United FC will kick off at 8 PM on November 3, 2023. 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 SD & HD (English), VH1 SD & HD (English), Surya Movies (Malayalam), DD Bangla & Colors Bangla Cinema (Bengali). 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.
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