Nagaland Premier League Preview: Matchday 8
MATCH OF THE WEEK
FC Naga Tornadoes Vs Dimapur United FC
Venue: Mokokchung Public Ground
Kick-off: 1:00 pm
FC Naga Tornadoes: Ato, Meren, Tali, Asiu, Vipito, Kekhrie, Victor, Bamdibe, Ating, Kivi, Rhitsho Mero, Lhiwete Koza, Akum Ao, Senelo, Kheshito, Olando, Kakai, Akheto, Thathang, Alem.
Coach: Mughato Sumi
Form guide: WWWWD
Current position: 2nd
Dimapur United: Ikiho, Phillip, Lulum, George, Sethpou, Rickden, Lanjangmei, Mosa, Gaisingam, Amir, David, Atoka, Jonah, Nito, Jacob, Katoho, Mamang, Kato.
Manager: G Dangmei
Form guide: WWLWW
Current position: 1st
This weekend Mokokchung will witness two high-profile clashes between four powerhouse clubs in the Nagaland Premier League. Barak Flamingoz takes on Kohima Komets in the early kick-off and FC Naga Tornadoes will face Dimapur United later in the day. FCNT are just a point behind leaders DUFC and a win will effectively take them two points clear at the top of the table. FC Naga Tornadoes have key players returning from suspensions and that will only bolster their formidable attack. Rhitso Mero is likely to lead the frontline again with Kivi playing just behind and their star winger and captain Ating operating on the left channel. Sanenlo and Victor will look to nullify and win the midfield battle, at the same time pulling strings for the forwards upfront. Naga Tornadoes usually come out of the blocks flying with their quick pressing and movement and they maintain a good amount of ball possession. They will look to rattle the opposition with their accurate passing and fluid off-the-ball movements in the final third of the pitch. Against a side that has a formidable defensive record conceding only once in the past 7 matches, FCNT will need to be at their best if they are to break down Dimapur United’s stubborn back four.
Dimapur United only need to avoid a defeat this weekend to maintain the slender lead at the top of the table. However, they will be determined and go all out for maximum points and stretch the lead further at the top. DUFC are in blistering form and they put 5 goals past Zonipang SA without a reply last weekend and Mokokchung of all venue is happy hunting groung for DUFC. They usually start with a4-4-2formation with the two prolific strikers in the form of Amir and David leading the line of attack. They complement each other well and form a deadly strike partnership and the duo scored two goals each in the last outing as well. Rickden and Lanjangmei will marshal the midfield and will look to subdue and break-up FCNT’s smooth built-up play. Lanjangmei plays the creator-in-chief role in the middle of the park and he will look to play more a more offensive role, creating and driving forward upfront to support the two frontmen. Dimapur United will again depend on their solid defense against an ultra attacking side that has scored 16 times in 7 games. DUFC has to be very meticulous in their approach if they are to hand FC Naga Tornadoes their first defeat of the season.
Key stats:- Goals scored : Goals conceded
FCNT : 16 4
DUFC : 14 1
FCNT : Mero, Kivi, Ating
DUFC : Amir, David, Lanjangmei
Barak Flamingoz FC Vs Kohima Komets FA
Venue: Mokokchung Public Ground
Kick-0ff: 11:00 am
Form guide: LWWWW: DLDWW
Barak Flamingoz hosts Kohima Komets in Mokokchung in what promises to be another thrilling encounter between two formidable sides. The Peren stalwarts have grabbed maximum points in their last four games. They drubbed New Market FC by nine goals making the scoreline the biggest in the league. Pemmi scored a record double hat-trick after coming in for the suspended striker Asian. Riding on this massive result, BFFC goes into the game with nothing short of confidence looking to grab all three points from the match. Barak deploys three central defenders at the back and the wingbacks providing the width on the flanks aiding the two forwards in attack. Placed 3rd on the table, Barak are three points behind table toppers Dimapur United.
After a stuttering start to the season, Kohima Komets are slowly finding their feet in the league and have now won their last two matches, edging out Sangpang FC by a lone goal and a convincing win over New Market FC last weekend. They will look to continue their winning streak when they travel to Mokokchung to take on a highly pumped up Barak Flamingoz. Currently placed 5th on the table with 10 points, they have found the back of the net ten times and have conceded six. KK, with its physical presence will look to outmuscle Barak Flamingoz with their power and strength all over the park. The two strikers upfront need to be at their best against an experienced and unyielding defensive backline.
BFFC : Velukho, Asian
KKFA: Asilie, Asito
Life Sports FC Vs Sangpang FC
Venue: Kohima Local Ground
Form guide: DLWWD: DDWLL
The only match in Kohima this weekend will see Life Sports taking on Sangpang FC. The hosts LSFC are place 4th on the table with three wins and two draws. With big clashes against sides that are above them happening at the other venues this weekend, this is a vital game for Life Sports. They are currently 7 points off the top spot and they will be aware of the gap opening up between them and the leaders and will take this one as a must-win game. LSFC will again rely on their prolific start striker T Haokip upfront along with their inspirational captain C Kikon to produce the goods. Salym will have to be weary of the strength the SFC possess in the form of Tongpang. Salym has his matural flow of the game coupled with poised on the right rearguard and is highly underrated. He is a joy to watch for purists across the state.
Sangpang FC are on a bad run and have lost the last two games and they will be determined to turn the tide back in their favor when the face Life Sports FC. They are currently placed 6th on the table and they need a string of good performances in the upcoming matches to move up the table and keep in touch with the early league leaders. Osen, who turned 15 this year, the youngest player in the Nagaland Premier League, will play a vital part in the match. For a player of his age, he is very calm and composed on the ball and he troubles the opponents with his terrific pace on the wings. He will be the one marking Kikon and taking him off of his game. Sangpang FC will be determined to get back to winning ways and put the bad run of form behind them.
LSFC : T Haokip, C Kikon
SFC : Osen, Tongpangkokba
Dynamic FC Vs New Market FC
Venue: DDSC Stadium, Dimapur
Kick-off: 12:00 pm
Form guide: WLLLW: LLLLL
Dynamic FC goes into the match after a very important win against Doyang FC last weekend. They will be eager to keep the winning momentum going when they face bottom side New Market FC this Saturday. DYFC are currently placed 8th on the table with two wins. Dynamic FC will rely heavily on their forward Matthew’s exploits upfront if they are to come away with any points from the match. The defensive back four needs to be at their best and upfront they have to find more firepower and add versatility to their attack.
New Market FC’s unfortunate bad phase continues and they are still in search of that elusive first win in the Nagaland Premier League. They will need to come up with a sound strategy as they have been conceding goals at an alarming rate. New Market FC’s downfall so far has been their inability to finish off goal scoring opportunities coming their way and they need to address that if they are to get their first points on the board.
DFC: Matthew, Chuba
NMFC: Tosovi, Vitotuo
Doyang FC Vs Zonipang SA
Venue: DDSC Stadium, Dimapur
Kick-off: 2:00 pm
Form guide: DWDLL: LDLLL
The Blue Assassins gear up for a big showdown against Zonipang this Saturday in the 2nd match in Dimapur. Last weekend Doyang FC lost out to Dynamic FC 1-2 in an intense match and dropping a place down in the table to 7th. The lads from Wokha created a host of chances in both halves against Dynamic FC but failed to convert the opportunities. The midfield battle again will be of vital importance when they take on the Mokokchung boys. Inconsistency has cropped back again to this camp and will need their full squad strength for this game. We expect the Dyang FC faithful to turn up in good numbers too.
Zonipang SA has salvaged just one point in their last 5 games, losing on four occasions and drawing one. ZSA will be eager to put this terrible run of form behind them and look to deliver a match winning performance this Saturday. They have dropped down to second from the bottom of the table and they need maximum points to bring back the much needed confidence and get the season back on track. This is one match ZSA needs to get back on the tracks.
DFC: Aben, Benri
ZSA: Imlikokba, Aoyanger
Match preview by NPL Punditz