PUNE: It’s going to be a clash between David and Goliath when Bharat FC will host table toppers Mohun Bagan in the rescheduled Round 4 match of Hero I-League here at Balewadi Sports Complex Stadium on Tuesday.
The home team Bharat FC are currently at the bottom of the table with 12 points from 15 games after losing to Sporting Club de Goa in their previous fixture on last Saturday.
On the other hand, Bagan have 32 points from 15 games, and hold an advantage of single point with Tuesday’s game in hand over the second-placed defending champions Bengaluru FC.
Bharat FC’s head coach Stuart Watkiss accepted the fact that the team has had two difficult weeks but they are ready to prove their mettle against the Mariners.
“Yes the last two weeks have not been particularly easy. We have had two defeats in a row but I think this game is the perfect occasion for the team to bounce back and prove its mettle. We are playing the oldest club in India, the current table-toppers. A positive result against such a good side will do my team a world of good and I am sure the lads have given that a thought,” said Watkiss.
Bagan’s coach Sanjoy Sen insisted that his side will settle for no less than all three points, and expects the tough game against the Lions.
“If you want to be the champions then you’ve to earn all three points. Will be looking to extend the lead to four points with four games to go after this match. It is very difficult to play against the struggling teams as these teams will do anything for survival. It will be tough game as Bharat FC being a new team would like to show to home fans that they can play good football.”
When asked about the traveling fans, who clearly make themselves audible in the stands, Sen elaborated about the role fans play during the game.
“Fans certainly play role in games course as the way they support team, it can lift team’s morale. It is always nice wherever you go clubs like Mohun Bagan, East Bengal have huge fan following, not only in Kolkata, but also all over the country. The most important thing is it doesn’t matter which club you’re supporting, but people are coming to watch football,” said 54-years old head coach.
On the team front news, Bharat FC will have full squad available for selection except New Zealand international striker Kris Bright who is nursing a hamstring injury. On the counter-part Bagan will welcome back striker Balwant Singh back into the playing XI after suspension following a red card against Royal Wahingdoh FC.
Kick-off: 7 PM