It will be a reunion of sorts when Mohun Bagan meet their former I-League rivals Bengaluru FC in the second semi-final of the 2018 Super Cup, at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha on Tuesday.
|Game||Mohun Bagan vs Bengaluru FC|
|Date||Tuesday, 17 April|
|Time||4:00 PM IST (GMT +5:30)|
TV CHANNELS & LIVE STREAM
The Star Sports Network have the exclusive broadcasting rights of the Super Cup. The games will be telecast with the option of English and/or Hindi commentary over their bouquet of television as well as digital platforms.
|India (English) TV channel||Online streams|
|Star Sports 2/2 HD||Hotstar and Jio TV|
Key Players: Aser Dipanda, Cameron Watson
Injured: Rahul Bheke
Key Players: Sunil Chhetri, Miku
The two rivals meet in the semifinals of the inaugural Super Cup on Tuesday, looking to clinch a spot in the summit clash.
A lot has changed since the last time these two teams met. Coincidentally, it was in this part of the country, just an hour's drive north of River Mahanadi at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack when the Blues won 2-0, lifting the now-defunct Federation Cup almost eleven months ago.
Both teams have missed out on the league this time around and the much-criticised cup competition could give them a piece of silverware to end their season on a high.
Sankar Lal Chakraborty has surprised many by how he has overseen the resurgence of Mohun Bagan. A 2-1 win over Churchill Brothers in the Round-of-16 and a convincing 3-1 victory over Shillong Lajong in the quarterfinals hs boosted their chances. However, it must be noted they are yet to face a team from the ISL.
The team has largely remained compact and solid with the strike pairing of Akram Moghrabi and Aser Dipanda delivering the goods. Interestingly, Cameron Watson squares up against his old team. The Aussie midfielder has been a rock for the Green and Maroons ever since joining midway through the season and will be hoping to pull a fast one over his previous employers.
Albert Roca, on the other hand, has had to juggle both the domestic cup and the AFC Cup at the same time and is set to make a host of changes. Expect nine changes from the team that eked out a 1-0 win over New Radiant last week.
With fan favourite Rahul Bheke injured, Harmanjot Khabra, who has now become the second-choice right-back. is all set to come into the starting lineup. Erik Paartalu will be asked to move back into midfield as the formidable trio of Udanta Singh, Miku and Sunil Chhetri form the attacking line. Left-back Subhasish Bose needs to be careful as he will be carrying a booking from the last game and another one could see him miss the final, just like what happened in the ISL, should his side go through.
The Mohun Bagan defence needs to be extra cautious against the Bengaluru frontmen. Chhetri is in red-hot form, scoring a hat-trick against NEROCA FC in the quarters and then coming off the bench to inspire a narrow win during midweek in the AFC Cup.
This will be the 14th meeting between the two sides. The Kolkata side has won five and lost thrice previously, while five meetings have ended in draws - which wouldn't be an option on Tuesday.
While the Southern Eagles will be riding their luck on star factor, Mohun Bagan will be hoping for some divine intervention following the 'bar puja' on Sunday.