The Durand Cup 2023 is heating up, and the 4th quarterfinal promises to be a cracker of a match. The Mariners (Mohun Bagan SG) are set to lock horns with the Islanders (MCFC) on 27th August at the Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan Stadium. The pre-match press conference featured MBSG’s head coach, Juan Ferrando, and Mumbai City FC’s head coach, Des Buckingham.
The tactical landscape
Both the Mariners and the Islanders have showcased their offensive firepower with 5-goal victories in this year’s Durand Cup. The Mariners, led by Dimitrios Petratos and Liston Colaco, recently crushed the Bangladesh Army 5-0. On the flip side, the Islanders, boasting talents like Bipin Singh and Jorge Pereyra Diaz, have been unbeaten, scoring 12 goals and conceding just once. Des Buckingham’s experiments with new players have yielded promising results, adding a layer of excitement to the upcoming clash.
“Every game is a challenge” – Des Buckingham
Des Buckingham emphasized the importance of preparation in the Durand cup, stating, “Every game we play is a challenge.” He’s not taking the Mariners lightly, despite the Islanders’ unbeaten record against them. Juan Ferrando echoed similar sentiments, “It is going to be a tough match,” he said, highlighting the need for focus and preparation.
Players to watch in the Durand cup quarterfinal
For the Mariners, Dimitrios Petratos and Liston Colaco have been the talk of the town, showing great promise and confidence. “I need to give my best for the team,” said Liston. For the Islanders, young defender Akash Mishra and forward Vikram Partap Singh have adapted well to their new club. “I feel like at home here in Mumbai City FC,” Akash Mishra remarked. These players could very well be the game-changers in the upcoming Durand cup match.
“Mindset is important for us” – Juan Ferrando
Juan Ferrando stressed the importance of mindset and preparation. The Mariners’ star strikers Dimitrios Petratos and Armando Sadiku are improving and could be game-changers. The Islanders, on the other hand, have a fully fit squad, which Des finds satisfying. “We’ve got everybody fully fit and trained,” he said, adding that this could be a crucial factor in the Durand cup quarterfinal.
Head-to-Head: The tale of the tape
Out of seven encounters, MCFC has emerged victorious five times, while the remaining two ended in draws. So, the Mariners have a bit of a mountain to climb, don’t they?
Recent form: Who’s sizzling and who’s fizzling?
MBSG: Started with a bang, crushing the Bangladesh Army 5-0 and then defeating Punjab FC 2-0. However, they hit a snag against arch-rivals East Bengal, losing 1-0.
MCFC: Unbeaten and how! They’ve been scoring like it’s going out of fashion—12 goals in total, conceding just once. Their recent victories include a 5-0 win against Jamshedpur FC and a 4-0 win against the Indian Navy.
Countdown to Durand Cup glory
As the clock ticks closer, both teams are aware that this match is more than just a game; it’s a battle for cup glory. With their impressive form, passionate fan support, and unwavering determination, this is set to be a clash of titans that will captivate football lovers across the region.
High stakes quarterfinal
Both teams have a lot to prove in this Durand Cup 3rd quarterfinal. A win here could set the tone for the rest of the season, and neither team will want to miss this golden opportunity. The Mariners are looking to continue their winning streak, while the Islanders aim to maintain their unbeaten run. It’s all to play for in this high-stakes match.
Probable starting line-ups
Mohun Bagan Super Giant (MBSG)
Vishal Kaith (GK), Subhasish Bose, Hector Yuste, Anwar Ali, Asish Rai, Anirudh Thapa, Anirudh Thapa, Hugo Boumous, Sahal Abdul Samad, Armando Sadiku, Jason Cummings
Mumbai City FC (MCFC)
Phurba Lachenpa (GK), Akash Mishra, Rahul Bheke, Mehtab Singh, Rostyn Griffiths, Apuia, Alberto Noguera, Bipin Singh, Greg Stewart, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Jorge Pereyra Diaz
The midfield battle
The midfield will be a crucial area of the pitch where the game could be won or lost. The Mariners, with talents like Anirudh Thapa and Hugo Boumous, have shown great ball control and passing accuracy, while the Islanders, featuring players like Yoell Van Nieff and Alberto Noguera, have been excellent in intercepting and transitioning from defense to attack. Both teams will look to dominate this area to gain an upper hand.
Given the recent form and head-to-head stats, MCFC seems to have the upper hand. However, MBSG’s midfield prowess cannot be ignored. Our prediction: A 3-2 win for MCFC.
Amplify the fan factor
The Mariners have a massive fan following, known for their passionate support. The Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan will relish the opportunity to back the Mariners in a crucial encounter on Sunday. The fan support could play a psychological role, giving an extra boost to the players.
Where to catch the action?
Don’t miss a second of this epic clash! Tune in to Sony TEN 2 HD, and Sony TEN 2, or stream it live on Sony LIV or JioTV at 6:00 PM IST.
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