I-League : Churchill Look To End Bagan's Unbeaten Streak
Churchill Brothers will be aiming to end Mohun Bagan's unbeaten streak in the I-League when the two teams lock horns at the Tilak Maidan in Goa today.
The Kolkata giants go into the game as favourites as they are fighting for the title but Churchill Brothers themselves are on a resurgent path as they secured an impressive 3-0 win against DSK Shivajians in the last round.
The Mariners are currently placed third in the table, three points adrift of bitter rivals East Bengal and one behind Aizawl FC. But the Sanjoy Sen led side have two games in hand and they will look to close the gap on the pacesetters.
The Kolkata club managed to secure their passage into the AFC Cup group stage but Sanjoy Sen’s men have one eye firmly on the I-League title as they rested some key players and are keen on taking maximum points out of this tricky away fixture.
Coach Sen admitted that Churchill have become a much-improved side from the team which they had beaten 1-0 in the reverse fixture back in January.
“We played similarly last year with the AFC matches and the I-League matches. We adjusted quite well but I think AFC and I-League matches are different and we have already shifted our focus to the I-League match. We are definitely looking for three points tomorrow.”
“Ever since Derrick Pereira has joined, Churchill has improved a lot in their playing style and they have become much stronger than when we played them last time. If you compare that team with this team, a lot of difference is there. So it will be challenging for us and away matches are always difficult,” Sen added.
“I respect Derrick and I know how capable he is and our challenge is to get maximum points from tomorrow’s match. Every team is giving a big challenge for the title contenders,” Sen said ahead of the humdinger.
Meanwhile, Churchill Brothers FC Goa come into the game after picking up a crucial victory over DSK Shivajians that saw them get out of the bottom place in the table.
“It was a morale-boosting win for us against Shivajians, but this will be a totally different ball game. I don’t think the AFC matches (of Bagan) will affect Bagan’s performance in the I-League. They have experienced and quality players in their ranks. I think it is much easier to play in the AFC than the I-League. The I-league is much tougher,” Churchill Brothers coach Derrick Pereira said.
Meanwhile, Churchill Brothers striker Anthony Wolfe who picked up the Hero of the Match award for the last two matches suggested that the Red Machines will give the Mariners a tough fight.
“We are playing on our home turf so we have that advantage. Mohun Bagan have more to lose than us and so we are going to fight it out in the match,” Wolfe suggested.
The match is scheduled at 07:00 PM and it’ll be telecast on Ten 2.