The Islanders gear up for the penultimate league game of the 2021-22 season as Des Buckingham’s side will step out tonight at the Tilak Maidan in Vasco to face Kerala Blasters with action kicking off at 7:30 PM.
After securing a 1-0 win over SC East Bengal, the Islanders bagged two on the trot when they faced FC Goa this past Saturday. Mehtab Singh opened the scoring for the Islanders after he delightfully headed in Cassio Gabriel’s freekick to get his first goal in Mumbai City colours. The Islanders could have extended their lead only for Cassio’s driving shot to crash against the woodwork and the referee disallowing a seemingly legitimate goal from Igor Angulo. FC Goa returned after the half time break a stronger unit. After sustaining pressure for large parts of the second half, the Islanders put the game to bed after Diego Mauricio capitalized on a defensive error from FC Goa and fired past Naveen Kumar’s near post to seal a 2-0 win for Des Buckingham’s side.
The Blasters have enjoyed a near identical season to the Islanders and sit in 5th place, just a point behind Mumbai City. After losing in their season opener, Ivan Vukomanovic’s side went on to stitch together a 10-match unbeaten run which included a 3-0 win over the Islanders. An unfortunate COVID-19 outbreak in the Blasters’ camp meant tonight’s hosts lost momentum but have gathered pace in the run up to the business end of the league stage and come into this tie off the back of a 3-0 win against Chennaiyin FC.
The implications are set. The stakes are high. Given the context, it could be a season-defining tie for either side but at the end of the day, it is just another game of football.
Who said what:
Des Buckingham: It's more important than we look at ourselves and make sure that we continue our run of form. You know, we started the season extremely well, and I spoke about finishing the season as well as we can. And, you know, we come into this game with four wins out of the last five. We've kept two consecutive clean sheets and we've started to show some real good signs of how we want play with and without the ball. So the focus will be on us. We must really make sure that we continue the same approach that we've had that start the season well, and put us in a strong position to finish the season.
Where to watch it:
The game will kick off at 7.30 pm 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 download the OneFootball app, find your broadcaster at indiansuperleague.com/broadcasters or follow all the action LIVE on our official Twitter account - @MumbaiCityFC.
28 Feb: SC East Bengal 1-1 NorthEast United (Perosevic 55’ P; Sahanek 45’)
1 Mar: Hyderabad FC 0-3 Jamshedpur FC (Sana 5’ OG, Hartley 28’, Chima 65’)
Fixtures coming up:
2 Mar: Kerala Blasters vs Mumbai City (Tilak Maidan; 7.30pm)
3 Mar: Chennaiyin FC vs ATK Mohun Bagan (Fatorda; 7.30pm)