EB Team News
Robbie Fowler’s side are unbeaten in their last five games, securing two wins on the way. And despite being ninth on the table, they find themselves just five points away from a playoff spot.
Their current run of form pleases Fowler but he knows SCEB still have a lot to fight for as they look to remain in contention for the playoffs.
“Of course, we are not getting carried away,” he said. “We are on a good little run and when people were quick to criticise us, we weren’t getting carried away and likewise. We know there’s plenty of hard work that we will be continuing to do. We look a more confident team and a settled team. We are in a good space but we need to keep growing and do what we are doing. So far, it has progressed more than the way we wanted at the start.”
One major positive that SCEB have witnessed during their unbeaten streak has been their attack. The Kolkata giants have been creating chances and found a way to score goals, an area they struggled at the start of the season.
The addition of young Bright Enobakhare has bolstered their forward line with the Nigerian contributing two goals from three games. The midfield has also stepped up, providing 7 of their 10 goals this season – contributing more than any other midfield.
KBFC Team News
This will come as a major boost against a Kerala side that has shipped the most goals this season (19) and just kept one clean sheet. But similar to SCEB, Kerala’s attack has also been in form, scoring 13 goals – only Mumbai City FC and Hyderabad FC have netted more.
Eight different goal scorers have been involved for Kibu Vicuna’s side – the joint-most by a team. But Kerala’s struggling defence is not an issue for Vicuna as long as his side is scoring more goals.
“The most important thing is not about conceding but scoring more than the opponent,” Vicuna said. “If you score more than you concede, the morale is automatically high. We are working on that. The important thing right now is that the last few matches we have been creating chances. We have to continue this with balance and limit opponents to lesser chances and (ensure) that they don’t score.”
East Bengal Squad:
Goalkeepers: Debjit Majumder, Rafique Ali, Mirshad Michu, Sankar Roy
Defenders: Abhishek Ambekar, Anil Chawan, Daniel Fox, Gurtej Singh, Lalramchullova, Mohamed Irshad, Nayaran Das, N Rohen Singh, Novin Gurung, Rana Gharami, Samad Mallick, Scott Neville, Pritam Singh
Midfielders: Aaron Amadi Holloway, Anthony, Bikash Jairu, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Haobam Singh, Jacques, Loken Meitei, Milan Singh, Mohammed Rafique, Sehnaj Singh, Surchandra Singh, Matti Steinmann, Wahengbam Luwan, Yumnam Singh
Forwards: Balwant Singh, CK Vineeth, Girik Khosla, Harmanpreet Singh, Jeje Lalpekhlua
Kerala Blasters Squad:
Goalkeepers: Albino Gomes, Bilal Khan, Prabhsukhan Singh Gill, Muheet Khan.
Defenders: Costa Nhamoinesu, Nishu Kumar, Bakary Kone, Jessel Carneiro, Sandeep Singh, Abdul Hakku, Lalruatthara;
Midfielders: Sergio Cidoncha, Sahal Abdul Samad, Vicente Gomez, Seityasen Singh, Rahul KP, Givson Singh, Lalthathanga Khawlhring, Yendrembam Denechandra, Nongdamba Naorem, Arjun Jayaraj, Ayush Adhikari, Jeakson Singh, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Ritwik Das, Rohit Kumar;
Forwards: Gary Hooper, Jordan Murray, Facundo Pereyra, Naorem Mahesh Singh, Shaiborlang Kharpan.
Date: Jan 15th (Friday)
Time: 7:30pm IST
Live on: Star Sports Network
Live Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar VIP, Jio TV