Table-toppers Bagan face Dempo in I-League
Unbeaten Mohun Bagan will look to consolidate their position atop the table when they face Dempo in the I-League football tournament at the Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan, here on Sunday.
Kolkata: Unbeaten Mohun Bagan will look to consolidate their position atop the table when they face Dempo in the I-League football tournament at the Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan, here on Sunday.
Mohun Bagan may be looking to extend their seven-game winning run, but a number of key members are missing in their squad due to various reasons including the suspended striker Sony Norde.
Captain and goalkeeper Shilton Paul is still unavailable, while Pritam Kotal is taking part in the preparatory camp for the U-23 national side.
In Norde's absence, Jeje Lalpekhlua, the highest scoring Indian of the ISL, is set to feature in the first XI while Balwant Singh is also a likely up front with Pierre Boya.
Sukhen Dey, who had played for United Sports Club in the past, may earn his first appearance this season as a make-shift right-back in the absence of Pritam.
"There is no point lamenting about players who are unavailable. We will have to fight with the players who are there," Mohun Bagan coach Sanjoy Sen said.
"Dempo are a good team and they have a new coach. Only a win can change their situation and we have to be very cautious," he said.
Dempo were handed a 5-1 rout by East Bengal in their last outing and managed to win only a single match among their eight outings under Arthur Papas as they lie in the relegation zone at ninth place with eight points in the 11-team table.
But the Englishman Morgan, who had a hugely successful stints in Indian football with East Bengal and Kerala Blasters in the past, has come back to take charge of an I-League outfit once again as he would once again bring a ray of hope.
They will also miss out on Aussie striker Tolgay Ozbey (calf tear) but all the other three foreigners --Carlos Hernandez, Haroon Amiri and Calum Angus --available.
The team will be missing the services of crafty winger Mandar Rao Desai and midfielder Prabir Das, who are also on national duty with the U-23 side.
Mohun Bagan have beaten the former Goan champions only once in their last five I-League encounters.