Mumbai City are hoping for their first win of the season against Odisha FC on their return to the Mumbai Football Arena after two seasons.
The Islanders played out a cracking 3-3 draw against champions Hyderabad FC to open their campaign same as Odisha FC, coming into this fixture with a stunning 3-2 victory over Jamshedpur FC.
MCFC vs OFC Match Details
Date: Friday, 15 October 2022
Time: 19:30 (IST)
Venue: Mumbai Football Arena, Mumbai
MCFC vs OFC Match Preview
Mumbai expected fierce competition from the holders Hyderabad FC and they got that although will be disappointed by some of their defending in the six goals thriller. Bipin Singh's excellent delivery from the right forced opposition defender Chinglensana to turn it into his own net in the 22nd minute to give Mumbai the lead. Then a clumsy challenge from Apuia on Bartholomew Ogbeche inside the box on the stroke of half-time allowed Hyderabad FC to regain a foothold in the game through Joa Victor’s spot-kick after Mumbai dominated mostly the first period. Five minutes into the second-half, Holicharan Narzary struck past Lachenpa to make it 2-1 in a neat team move and also some passive defending by the visitors. Playmaker Greg Stewart had an excellent ISL debut with Mumbai City giving Bipin the chase for the first goal and then getting into the scoresheet himself to level things up. The Islanders switched off again this time from a corner with Victor gaining his second on the night. Stewart was involved again to set up Alberto Noguera to prevent starting the new season with a defeat. Coach Des Buckingham decided to bench Ahmed Jahouh for the game in a strange move but the Moroccan’s introduction as a second-half substitute in the midfield gave the team license to commit more men forward sealing the draw in the process. The defense didn’t look much comfortable as was in the Durand Cup final giving Buckingham some fixing to do heading into the next games. Diego Mauricio’s form for Odisha FC can raise those concerns with his impressive brace the other day against Jamshedpur FC giving them the win in the season opener. Having played with the Islanders in the AFC Champions League on loan earlier this year, he will be looking at the prospect to score against them.
Odisha FC needs Diego Mauricio’s scoring boots again to stand a chance against Mumbai City FC. The Brazilian clinched an injury-time winner in the 3-2 thrilling win having trailed only minutes ago by 2-1. Kick-off of the game was delayed by a storm but the Juggernauts were struck by another one when the game started, this time from Jamshedpur FC as they went 2-0 down only ten minutes on the clock. Mauricio then produced a splendid equalizer against the run of play shortly after to keep his side in the game. Both sides spurned chances in the second-half opening the gate for any side to take all three points in the game and Odisha obliged. Substitute Issac Vanmalsawma found the back of the net with an excellent left-footed effort in the 88th minute to equalize inspiring his side for the eventual victory. Coach Josep Gombau will be satisfied with his side making a spirited comeback to take all three points but unhappy about the way things started in the last game. Odisha FC failed to resist early pressure from the Steelers causing mayhem in their defense. If they are to take advantage of Mumbai City’s defensive lapses in the next game, they have to look at themselves first. A slow start will also do them no good with the opposition this time sustaining some league-proven firepower. Mumbai City FC did the double last season over Odisha including victories in the last four. The last three of them have been thrashing by four goals or more. The Juggernauts must be wary of the challenge they are going to face with their home advantage not coming until a week. Having a positive start to the season has not been an issue for the side in the past seasons but maintaining it has been. Gombau will be hoping the team doesn’t get flattered this time around in his second spell after the rebranding of the franchise. However, Odisha have a packed schedule to overcome with Kerala Blasters, Bengaluru FC and then Hyderabad FC to face in the next weeks.
MCFC vs OFC Predicted Lineups
MCFC: Phurba Lachenpa; Rahul Bheke, Mourtada Fall, Mehtab Singh, Mandar Rao Dessai; Apuia, Ahmed Jahouh; Lalrinzuala Chhangte, Greg Stewart, Bipin Singh; Jorge Diaz
OFC: Amrinder Singh, Thoiba Moirangthem, Narender Gahlot, Carlos Delgado, Sahil Panwar, Raynier Fernandes, Issac Vanmalsawma, Saul Crespo, Jerry Mawihmingthanga, Diego Mauricio, Victor Rodriguez
MCFC vs OFC Dream11 Team Prediction
GK: Lachenpa (7.5)
DEF: Bheke (8), Fall (9), Javier (7), Panwar (8.5)
MID: R Fernandes (8), Jahouh (9), Bipin (8.5)
FW: Jerry (7.5), Mauricio (8.5), Stewart (9)
Captain: Greg Stewart
Vice-captain: Diego Mauricio
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