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ISL 2019: Chennaiyin FC aim to bounce back against Mumbai City

PTI Chennai | Updated on October 26, 2019

File photo of Chennaiyin FC Coach John Gregory   -  The Hindu

The new-look CFC will look up to local star Dhanpal Ganesh to provide the spark in the midfield and drive the team forward in the absence of an injured Jeje Lalpekhlua.

Two-time ISL champion Chennaiyin FC will aim to bounce back strongly with a win after a losing start in ISL-6 when it takes on Mumbai City FC in its first home game here on Sunday.

The CFC head coach John Gregory will be aware of the need to get going quickly as the team’s fortunes went downhill after a few early defeats in the 2018-19 season. He would want the players to find form after a lacklustre performance in the loss to FC Goa.

The new-look CFC will look up to local star Dhanpal Ganesh to provide the spark in the midfield and drive the team forward in the absence of an injured Jeje Lalpekhlua.

The defence which included Eli Sabia and Lucia Goian was found wanting in the 0-3 loss to Goa and will need to tighten up in the matches ahead. Gregory said as much after the team lost the opener and would want the defence up and running.

Also, the onus will be on the mid-fielders to press forward and feed the forwardline. How the promising Lallianzuala Chhangte, one of CFC’s new signings this season, fares will be watched with interest. A lot would depend on how he and Ganesh fare in the games to come.

Mumbai team’s Gameplan

The Mumbai team on the other hand rode on Amine Chermiti’s debut goal to register a win against Kerala Blasters in Kohi on Tuesday and will look to add to Chennaiyin’s early season misery in the Diwali clash.

Chermiti, a Tunisian international, who joined Mumbai this season, along with Sengal player Modou Sougou, are likely to be key in the long season ahead and the CFC defence will have to find a way to contain the duo if both are picked for tomorrow’s game.

Having eked out three points in its opener, Mumbai City will come into the CFC fixture with a lot of confidence and given the former champion’s struggles, will fancy adding to its points tally.

Croatian central defender Mato Grcic and Indian internationals Rowllin Borges and Sarthak Golui will be the other players to watch out for.

After a nightmarish 2018-19 season, CFC is looking for redemption and the Marina arena, its home, probably provides the right setting to spark the revival. The festival crowd could do well to inspire Gregory’s men, who have a lot to play for.

Published on October 26, 2019

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