Mohammedan Sporting Club will face defending champions BSF of Jalandhar in their last Group A fixture of the 70th Independence Cup on Wednesday, October 10 at the Nurul Amin Stadium, kick-off 2:30pm.
Black Panthers’ semifinal berth has already been confirmed, but a point would ensure they finish on top of Group A. Border Security Force, on the other hand, can go through to the last four with a draw and even a one-goal loss. Morning Star Club, however, would hope Mohammedan Sporting would win with a margin of two goals or more, which would take them through to the semifinal.
The task, however, looks little bit easier for BSF. That said, BSF might not be facing Mohammedan Sporting at the latter’s 100% level.
Although Mohammedan Sporting doesn’t have any injury concerns, coach Raghunath Nandi said he is likely to make changes against BSF, given his side have already assured themselves of participation in the knockout stage.
The veteran tactician is eager to give other members of his 22-man squad a taste of the tournament in Nagaon, Assam.
“We are going to rest Seydou Maddy and Mohammad Amirul, unfortunately both them have picked up a yellow card in the last match. They are key members of the squad and we don’t want to take any risk before semifinal,” he said
Mohammedan Sporting, who are the most successful team in the history of the competition, have been labelled favourites by the fans and local media, but Nandi doesn’t feel the same.
“There are no favourites once the match starts and the better team will win eventually. You can say we have a good chance to win this game. But I don’t feel we can be labelled as favourites,” he added.
Nandi believes this tournament is the ideal platform to test his players before the forthcoming 2018/19 Second Division League.