Sunil-Chhetri led Bengaluru FC will aim to retain their momentum against NorthEast United, after losing their previous fixture against Mumbai City FC. The Indian Super League (ISL) sides Blue and whites will take to the field against the Highlanders at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Wednesday.
Bengaluru FC were the only unbeaten side in the league until they were handed a stunning defeat by Mumbai City FC in their previous clash.
Now, Bengaluru FC have 27 points from 12 matches, the same as leaders Mumbai City who have played an additional game but have a better goal difference. A win against the Highlanders will help them climb back to the top of the table.
“We are fighting for the title, and at the end of the day, that’s what we want the most. We were disappointed to lose out on our unbeaten streak but nobody is going to give us a gift for a record. What we want is to make the play-offs,” said coach Carles Cuadrat.
NorthEast are third on the table with 23 points from 13 games and face a tougher challenge to seal a place in the top four.
They are four points adrift of the league leaders, with the likes of Goa and Jamshedpur breathing down their necks at fourth and fifth spot respectively.
Coach Eelco Schattorie will be looking to take advantage of the points dropped by playoff competitors Goa and Jamshedpur on Monday.
“We should have won in the home game against Bengaluru. We are on the edge of qualifying and we must win. Bengaluru need to win as they are just coming from their first defeat. They should not be worried,” said Schattorie, whose side were denied a famous win by an injury-time equaliser from Chencho Gyeltshen.
NorthEast got the better of Chennaiyin FC in their last match, thanks to a stupendous long-range strike by Bartholomew Ogbeche.
The Nigerian striker is tied with Ferran Corominas for the Golden Boot race with 10 goals and will once again hold the key.