Kolkata: An underperforming Mohun Bagan will eye winning start in 2018 when they take on an inconsistent Chennai City at the club ground on Tuesday.
While this could have well have been a regular fixture for the former champions on any given day, three successive draws at home against weaker opponents have increased the importance for a win and no one more than Bagan coach Sanjoy Sen will hope for all three points against the eight-placed opposition.
Having led the team to I-League title glory just seven months into charge, coach Sanjoy Sen however finds his job in jeopardy with calls of asking him to ‘go back’ already rising among the fans.
The gaffer however thinks ‘It’s matural’. “To draw thrice in a row is more shameful than a defeat. But we have no excuse,” added Sen asking his players to take the responsibility in the match that follow. “We are responsible for this situation and it is for us to find a way to get out of it.”
But to do that in the absence of statement Sony Norde who will miss his second consecutive match with injury, means that the likes of Ansumana Kromah and Dipanada Dicka will have to take additional responsibility, something they have failed at so far in the season.
“We cannot be over-reliant on Sony. Sony-less Mohun Bagan have to learn to win. We have to get back among goals. In the last few matches, I have felt the boys have been under pressure after conceding,” said Sen at the pre-match conference.
The failure to sustain pressure despite going ahead may well see experienced Ceter-back Kingshuk Debnath, who field to keep up pace with Arrows’ forward Rahim Ali make way for Rana Rana Gharami who will be tasked to stop Chennai striker Jean Michael Joachim.
The French player who have also played in Ligue 1 may be enough for a Bagan team that has conceded thrice after going ahead.
Chennai on the other hand find themselves positioned eight in the 10 men table after six rounds. While goal scoring have never been a big problem for then conceding soft goals is their concern and coach V Soundarajan hopes that his players can rise up to the occasion of what he calls their ‘Greatest Challenge.’
“It is a great challenge to play Mohun Bagan at their home ground. We have been playing well but not getting the desired result,” added the Chennai City gaffer.