Match Preview: Mumbai City FC vs Chennaiyin FC
Alexandre Guimaraes’ men are back at the Mumbai Football Arena for consecutive home games after a spirited performance against a strong Kerala Blasters side where they earned their first away points of this season courtesy a late equaliser from Balwant Singh.
The Islanders will face newly appointed head coach John Gregory’s Chennaiyin FC on Sunday, December 10 in search of our second victory in the second home game of the season.
Balwant Singh was instrumental against Kerala Blasters last Sunday when he finished off a brilliant low cross from Everton Santos to bring Mumbai City FC back on level terms. Mark Sifneos’ calm finish had given the Blasters an early lead in the game but Balwant made sure that the Kerala outfit wasn’t getting away with 3 points for a second season in a row at home.
Visitors, Chennaiyin FC will be bidding to extend their winning streak to 4 matches after the disappointing opening game, which saw them go down against FC Goa at home.  After the debacle in Chennai, the Super Machans have bounced back with a series of impressive performances where they comfortably beat North East United, FC Pune City and most recently, ATK in a rollercoaster 3-2 victory.
Where to watch it:
The game will kick off at 8pm IST and will be broadcast on the Star Sports Network, Hotstar and Jio TV for all viewers in India. For our global fans, you can find your broadcaster here. You can also follow live action on our official Twitter account - @MumbaiCityFC.
Aiborlang Khongjee continues to be the only name on the long-term injury list. Midfielders Leo Costa and Zakeer Mundampara are inching towards full fitness.
Raphael Augusto will be in contention to feature for John Gregory’s side after being declared fit.
Mumbai City FC’s record against Chennaiyin FC is rather shoddy, winning only on 1 occasion while ending up on the losing side 4 times and drawing once. Last season saw a shift in fortunes as the Islanders remained unbeaten against them, earning 4 points out of a possible 6 after losing all four encounters in the first two seasons of the ISL.
Mumbai City FC earned their first ever points against Chennaiyin FC in the history of the ISL kudos to Leo Costa’s thunderous left-footed equalizer, late in the 88th min after Jeje had put the home team in front. The returning home fixture saw the Islanders winning 2-0 comfortably thanks to a Krisztian Vadocz strike from outside the box and a brilliant team goal, finished off by Matias Defederico. That match holds great historic presence for Mumbai City FC as that victory ensured the qualification for the play-offs for the first time in their history.
The Islanders’ roster boasts of Zakeer Mundampara and Mehrajuddin Wadoo who have both turned out for Chennaiyin in previous seasons. The most notable name would however be that of talismanic forward Balwant Singh. The Hoshiarpur born striker featured for Chennaiyin FC in the ISL and will be looking to add to his tally of 2 goals so far in the 2017-18 season by scoring against his former side.
The only other player who has donned the blue of both sides is left-back Sena Ralte who featured for Chennayin in their title-winning 2015 campaign and for the Islanders in 2016 under Alexandre Guimaraes’ first season with Mumbai City FC.
Newcomers Jamshedpur FC got their first win of the season and a fourth straight clean sheet after they beat Delhi Dynamos 1-0, earning three away points. Tomorrow’s opponents Chennayin FC hosted bottom placed ATK and played out a thrilling game going 3-2 to the home side. Jeje bagged a brace including a stoppage time winner for the Super Machans. League toppers Bengaluru FC picked up their first away points of the season, running out 1-0 winners in a close encounter against NorthEast United.
The other fixtures of the week are:
Saturday, December 9
FC Goa vs Kerala Blasters (Goa, 8pm)
Sunday, December 10
Jamshedpur FC vs FC Pune City (Jamshedpur, 5.30pm)