I-League, Round 3: Bengaluru FC vs Shillong Lajong FC - Preview

BFC is placed second on the points-table after Mohun Bagan with six points from two games. 

I-League, Round 3: Bengaluru FC vs Shillong Lajong FC - Preview

Bengaluru: On a two-match winning streak, last season's runners-up Bengaluru FC (BFC) will look to top the points-table with a win against Shillong Lajong FC in a I-League football fixture at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium, here on Sunday.

BFC is placed second on the points-table after Mohun Bagan with six points from two games. Bagan have same points as BFC but the Kolkata outfit is atop by virtue of superior goal difference.

Unlike last season, Bengaluru got off to a positive start as they scored a goal in each half to defeat Salgaocar 2-1 in their inaugural match and hosts then beat debutant Aizawl FC through Curtis Osana's solitary goal.

High on confidence with consecutive wins under its belt, Bengaluru FC will start as favourites tomorrow against an opponent who finished ninth last season.

However, Bengaluru FC coach Ashley Westwood is in no mood to underestimate the potential of their opponents.

"It will be tough. They have got four good foreigner players. Both Brazilians will play. Brazilian forward (Uilliams Bomfin) looks like a good tall threat. Every team that comes in here always raise their game," he told reporters on the eve of the match.

Benaguluru FC midfielder Eugeneson Lyngdoh added: "I think we have to be better than Shillong. Each and every player knows his job and we need to execute that on the field tomorrow."

Westwood also said the team need to play well tomorrow and control the game better.

Though Bengaluru are second on the points-table, they haven't been among goals as Mohun Bagan have been.

Responding to a pertinent query, Westwood said the team will not win the league if they don't score enough goals.

"We have got results and it is always about getting results. We have to score more goals. We are not going to win the league if we don't score enough goals," he said.

Westwood pinned hopes on North Korean striker Kim Song-Yong and CK Vineeth to score goals in coming matches.

"Kim is more of a target man. Vineeth is someone who can run in behind defences. I am happy with them so far, I just hope they start scoring more goals as we go forward," he said.

Bengaluru have faced injury problems with Robin Singh and Joshua Walker out of action for rest of the season.

Asked about Michael Collins replacing Joshua Walker, Westwood said, "Collins is very similar to Josh, professional, played many games in England. He is more versatile than Josh.

Fitness and professionalism is right up there."

Shillong, on the flipside, will look to play to their potential and get a good result for themselves.

Coach Thangboi Singto said: "We drew at home against Mumbai FC. We have to carry on the form from that match, try and do well. Bengaluru is one of the best teams and it will be a very tough match for us."

Singto further said Bengaluru have some good Indian attacking players like Sunil Chhetri and Lyngdoh, and also good defenders in Curtis Osano and John Johnson.

"I think, the defence, Johnson and Osano are a wall. They have the best Indian player in Sunil Chhetri and they also have Eugeneson (Lyngdoh). I know him well and his character as well. They have some good Indian players," he said.

Singto also said Bengaluru have some of the best Northeastern players like Eugeneson, Lalchhuan Mawia, Thoi Singh, Udanta Singh and Chhuantea Fanai.