Bengaluru FC will be keen to put an end to their winless streak in the Indian Super League when Shield winners Mumbai City FC visit the Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Friday, December 8. Simon Grayson’s side have had a far from ideal start to the campaign, picking up just one win in their eight fixtures so far. Mumbai City FC, on the other hand, head into this fixture without League winning Head Coach Des Buckingham, who has taken up the managerial role at 3rd Division English side Oxford United.
“With Des leaving it’s a blow for them because he’s done very well here in India. In terms of their approach and strategy, it’ll be no different whoever is in charge for them because they have a way of playing, which is the same through the City group. We know what to expect, the strengths and weaknesses, having played them enough times last year. We did well against them in certain games and are looking forward to it,” said Grayson, speaking to the press on the eve of the fixture.
Mumbai, who had to juggle their domestic campaign with their AFC Champions League commitments, now have just the ISL to focus on after six defeats in as many group stage games meant an exit from continental competition for the Islanders.
Blues’ striker Curtis Main was on target in the recent 3-3 draw against Punjab FC. The Englishman, a summer signing from St Mirren, has scored twice in just two starts this term.
“I’m here to score goals. The games are coming up in a short space of time, and hopefully I can add to that and find the net a few more times. I want to be able to help us pick up the wins that I think we deserve. In some of the games we haven’t taken the points where we probably should have. We know Mumbai are a good team, but we believe that we are capable of winning this, especially at home,” said Main.
Bengaluru FC met Mumbai on five occasions last term, including the final of the Durand Cup where goals from Alan Costa and Sivasakthi Narayanan gave them a 2-1 win. The two sides most recently met in the second leg of the 2022-23 ISL semifinal, where Javi Hernandez’s strike took the fixture to penalties and the Blues would triumph thanks to saves from Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.
Kick-off between the Blues and Mumbai City FC is scheduled for 8pm and will be telecast live on JioTV, Sports18 and VH1. Tickets to the fixture are available on PayTM Insider.