Wednesday, 6 July, 2022
E-paper

Confident Kings face Mohun Bagan in AFC Cup today

  • DM Simanto from Kolkata
  • 21 May, 2022 12:00 AM
  • Print news

After making a winning start, the high-flying Bashundhara Kings are eyeing to continue their winning streak against the home side ATK Mohun Bagan in their second group D match of the ongoing AFC Cup 2022 at Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata, India today.

The match kicks off at 5:00pm (BST). T-Sports will be telecasted the match.

Earlier on Wednesday, Bangladesh Premier League champions began their AFC Cup campaign by defeating the Maldivian side Maziya Sports and Recreation Club by a solitary goal victory. Gambian forward Nuha Marong Krubally struck the match-winner for the Kings with a header in the 33rd minute of the game.

Meanwhile, Mohun Bagan suffered a 2-4 goals defeat to their compatriots Gokulam Kerala FC on the same day.

Ahead of the match, Kings head coach Oscar Bruzon said that they are planning to control the match from the very beginning. 

“We did what we had to do in the first game and now it will be about controlling the game against ATK Mohun Bagan. If we can do that, we will do well tomorrow,” Bruzon told the reporters in a press conference on Friday.

The Kings met Mohun Bagan in the last AFC Cup. The Bangladeshi outfit were expecting to beat them to qualify for the knockout phase but the match ended in a 1-1 draw due to the controversial refereeing and Mohun Bagan got a chance to advance to the next stage.

Kings’ Spanish coach, who is well known about their opponents, further added that they would hold the home side for the first 30 minutes and then would go ahead with the plans.

“Definitely, a big match, nice venue with the home team (ATK Mohun Bagan). I’m planning a do-over game. We will stick to our plan, it will be important to hold the first 30 minutes, and then go ahead with our plans,” he said.

“Mohun Bagan are a team still in transition. They need to adapt more to the coaches’ plan. We know that they are struggling at the back. But I am sure the coach has identified the struggling areas, and we will not get complacent,” the coach further said.

However, the Kings are sharing the top spot of the points table with I-league champions Gokulam Kerala after their respective victories on the first day. The other two teams, the hosts ATK Mohun Bagan and Maziya SRC are yet to open their accounts.

Mohun Bagan head coach Juan Ferrando said that there would be no change in how his team approached the match.

“We learn about points to improve, and we will try to do our best against Bashundhara. My team is a good team and a good club. I want to concentrate on that at the moment,” Ferrando said.

“We are continuing the same plan, the same style. This is football, I have trust in my squad. I know they want to do their best, and tomorrow, we are going to be better than the last,” he said.

Kings two players midfielder Sohel Rana and defender Tariq Kazi left the field on stretchers during their last match against Maziya but Kings’ officials confirmed that their injuries are not serious and likely to play the crucial match against the home side.

On the other hand, Mohun Bagan are not as lucky as the Kings. Their one of the best defenders Tiri ruled out from the squad with injury.

“We have been unlucky with injuries, like Tiri (who had to be stretchered off against Gokulam Kerala). Pressure exists all the time as we have 26 players in the squad. I have trust in all the players. We won’t have Tiri but there are other players that I trust to hold the defence in his absence,” he added.

In the day’s other match, Gokulam Kerala will take on Maziya SRC at the same venue at 9:00pm.