Mohammedan Sporting Club faces a daunting task tomorrow when they take on Dempo SC in an final round encounter of the Second Division League in Goa.
The game at the Fatorda Stadium promises to be a intense battle involving high stakes. If Mohammedan Sporting fail to win the match then they will be out of the race for promotion to the Hero I-League while a win for Dempo almost guarantees them a place in the top-flight.
“We are not looking at the table right now. What we have to do is just keep winning. It’s not an easy task but certainly achievable,” said Mohammedan Sporting coach Subrata Bhattacharya Jr.
Both teams head into game coming off solid wins. While Mohammedan Sporting beat LoneStar Kashmir FC 1-0 on Sunday, Dempo beat Gangtok Himalayan SC 3-0 a week ago. However, the match against Dempo will be Mohammedan Sporting’s third away game in the last seven days whereas Dempo would be playing their first in the same duration.
Mohammedan Sporting who are unbeaten in their last five games will be keen to maintain momentum. However, the task at hand will be not be easy for the Black Panthers as they head into the most important fixture of their entire campaign without James Moga who is unavailable for remaining encounters due to a four-match suspension.
Ajay Singh, who scored the winner against LoneStar Kashmir, will be the man on whom the team will rely for goals in Moga’s absence.
“This is the most crucial game for us, players know the consequences if we don’t win tomorrow and they are eager to give their best effort.” Coach Bhattacharya added.
The last time when these two teams faced off in Kolkata the match ended in a scoreless stalemate despite Mohammedan Sporting dominating much of the proceedings.
Dempo, on the other hand, are on a four-match winning streak will depend on Felix Chidi Odili to break through the Mohammedan Sporting defence. The Nigerian will be joined by the India international Holicharan Narzary while the likes of Romeo Fernandes, Mandar Rao Dessai, Jewel Raja Sheikh and Germanpreet Singh will supply them from midfield.
The defence will be led by Chika Wali alongside Mohammed Ali with Debabrata Roy and Shallum Pires starting as wing-backs. Dempo skipper Laxmikant Kattimani will stand guard under the bar who has kept clean-sheets in last five matches.
On the team news front, Mohammedan Sporting have travelled to Goa with the same 18-member squad from the previous match.
The match at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Fatorda kicks-off at 4pm on Wednesday, May 11.