Unbeaten Churchill Brothers FC Goa will face former champions Aizawl FC at the Tilak Maidan today with Churchill looking to close the gap at the top with a win at home and Aizawl looking infuse more consistency in their I-League campaign, which has largely flattered to deceive.
Churchill Brothers have been having a successful campaign so far, coming away unscathed from some tough games and scheduling in the initial phases to lie in fourth place with 10 points from six games. A win on Sunday would leave them just four adrift of Chennai and make the two-time former champions, their most serious challengers.
The visitors, on the other hand, have blown hot and cold with some impressive performances interspersed with very ordinary ones and coach Gift Raikhan will have his task cut out against a rampaging Churchill frontline spearheaded by Trinidadian Willis Plaza and Gambian Dawda Cessay.
The duo has accounted for eight of Churchill’s 10 goals so far and Plaza heads the league highest scorer charts with six to his name. The quality of his finish in the last three games, in particular, is what will give Raikhan headaches.
Churchill has a solid defence with Serbian Nenad Novakovic, Libyan Hussein Eldor and Wayne Vaz dishing out commendable performances game after game and with Israel Gurung and Khalid Aucho in midfield, Romanian coach Petra Gigiu seems to have all his bases covered.
“Tomorrow we expect to win the match. Every game is different in its own way but we will play 100%. We lost points but we are ready to face Aizawl. I like to win every match, so does
I am satisfied with the team and their performances. We haven’t played too many games so far. We need to play more and get accustomed to the league.” Said Churchill Brothers FC coach Gigiu, during a pre- match interaction with the media.
Gift Raikhan, on the other hand, has major defensive worries, having leaked as many as 11 goals in seven games which are primarily responsible for their current ninth position.
“We are not getting good results though we are playing good football. Tomorrow it will be tough. Churchill is a very good team and they beat Mohun Bagan but we are confident. We are positive but in football, we cannot predict. Their attack is very good, especially Plaza,” said Aizawl coach Gift Raikhan during the interaction with the