After first two matches played in front of huge crowds in Kolkata and Guwahati, the last game in Delhi saw slightly less crowds, allegedly due to mis-managment during the crowd entry which saw many return back and many entering much later during the game. This game in Goa is expected to witness capacity crowds and a electrifying atmosphere.
FC Goa is being coached by Zico, the Brazilian legend who took Japan in FIFA world cup. FC Goa also has the advantage of getting a team of set Indian players from Dempo SC, with their coach Arthur Papas working as assistant coach for FC Goa. Goa had decent results in the practice games, defeating Sesa Football Academy 3-0 and India U19 team 4-0. However, they haven’t faced real tough opposition and it won’t be wise to conclude much from these results.
Chennaiyin FC was assembled much later than other teams, as the team has created after the Bengaluru franchisee did not materialize. Player-manager Marco Materazzi’s team has played against the Army team winning two matches 2-1 and 7-1. Not keeping clean sheet in both games will be a matter of concern, but eye witnesses have praised Chennaiyin’s possession football.
Both the coaches are positive about their team’s chances. Zico has urged his players to give 100% and has said it is ok to make mistakes but the players need to play at their full potential. He has also asked his players to watch marquee player Robert Pires and learn from him. Marco Materazzi, on the other hand, declared his team to be the best in ISL, but confessed that delay in assembling the team is a matter of concern. The diverse weather in different ISL venues is also a matter of concern.
FC Goa’s biggest advantage is having the established Dempo SC players. It is expected that Dempo’s Indian players will combine much better than most of the ISL teams. Some of the Indian players who can make a difference are Debabrata Roy, Prabir Das, Narayan Das, Rowilson Rodrigues, Gabriel Fernandes, Clifford Miranda, Mandar Rao Desai, Alwyn George, Romeo Fernandes and Jewel Raja. However, recent form of Narayan Das and Alwyn suggest that they are better off in the bench. Gabriel Fernandes has impressed in the last two I-League seasons and also in the practice matches for FC Goa and he is expected to start the game. The foreigners like Robert Pires and former Arsenal player Andre Santos are expected to provide quality to FC Goa’s play. Experienced I-League foreigners like Ranti Martins, Tolgay Ozbey and Zoheb Amiri are likely to use their experience and acclimatization to good use.
Chennaiyin FC look slightly weaker in the Indian players department, while they have signed good foreigners to compensate for that. Marco Materazzi has ruled himself out of the game, but players like Mikael Silvestre (former Manchester United defender), Elano (Brazilian playmaker, former Man City, played for Gremio regularly last season), Bojan Djordjic (Swedish midfielder), Cristian Hidalgo (Barcelona youth product) and Jairo Suarez (Colombian defender) make a solid team. The Indian players to look out for will be Balwant Singh, who has been in potent form last I-League and this season’s Calcutta league and Harmanjot Khabra who can play in multiple positions. Former Indian defender Gouramangi Singh will try to re-establish himself.
Prediction : FC Goa 1 – 1 Chennaiyin FC
TV information and Live Stream
IMG-Reliance has made sure that the game is witnessed globally. 7.00 pm is the kick off time in India. It can be seen in India with English commentary in Star Sports 2 and Star Sports HD 2, with Malayalam commentary in Asianet Movies, Bengali commentary in Star Jalsa, Kannada commentary in Asianet Suvarna plus and Hindi commentary in Star Gold and Star Utsav.
The match can also be seen in many countries through broadcasters like Eurosport 2, beIN Sports, SLGO, Super Sport Select and Fox Soccer2Go.
FC Goa vs Chennaiyin match discussions will take place in Indian Football Forum.