East Bengal favourites against lowly Chennai in I-League tie (Preview)

Kolkata, Feb 4 (IANS) East Bengal head coach Trevor James Morgan has a chance to do an encore of six wins on the bounce when his side takes on newcomers Chennai City FC in an I-League football match at the Barasat Stadium here on Sunday.

East Bengal, since being held by Aizawl FC in their opening game of the season, have stringed together five wins on the trot with major victory over fellow title contenders Bengaluru FC at home.

With arch-rivals and heavyweights Mohun Bagan to face after Sunday’s game, the high-flying red and gold brigade would not want to spoil their applecart against a side languishing ninth in the points table.

But Morgan is not being complacent. “You cannot take any team lightly because upsets happen and Chennai is doing well of late. That’s why we approach every game the same way. We respect all the oppositions we play against.

“They have two Brazilian forwards in the team and if you give them time and space they can hurt you,” said the Briton. The Brazilians he was talking about are Charles and Marcos Thank.

East Bengal will be without the services of veteran midfielder Mehtab Hossain who is suspended.

Chennai, coached by Robin Charles Raja, were impressive in their win against Aizawl FC at home.

The southern side has looked good in their own lair, fighting hard against Mohun Bagan but eventually going down 1-2 and holding Minerva Punjab FC to a 0-0 draw, but their travails on the road brought to the fore their inexperience.

Chennai will be without their goalkeeper Karanjit Singh who picked up a niggle before Aizawl game. Abhra Mondal is expected to again stand under the bar.