Bengaluru keen to extend dominance at home

Unbeaten Blues Take On Mumbai City FC As Cuadrat Talks About The Need To Open A Gap On The Table

Bengaluru: Two teams with contrasting runs of form, but with equally much at stake will square off at the Kanteerava Stadium, on Sunday when Carles Cuadrat’s Bengaluru FC host Jorge Costa’s Mumbai City FC in a Round Eight clash of the Indian Super League.

The only unbeaten team in the League this season, the second-placed Blues will look to make the most of Jamshedpur FC’s draw with Kerala Blasters on Friday, and consolidate their position in the top half of the table. Mumbai City, meanwhile, will be keen to halt a winless run that extends to six games – one that has seen them languish on 8th position.

“Three points on Sunday will be very vital for us when you consider how close things are on the table. Teams have played out far too many draws which is why everyone is within touching distance of a play-off spot. A win will help us increase the gap between competitors on the table and that’s what makes the game against Mumbai so important,” said Cuadrat on the eve of the game.

Stating that there were no easy games in the League, Cuadrat served a reminder that his championship-winning side from last season managed to pick just one point from a possible six against Mumbai City. “Mumbai are one of the teams that have done well to retain most of the squad from last season, and that helps. They need a win to get their season back on track, so we know what we will be up against,” he added.

Bengaluru haven’t exactly been prolific in front of goal so far this season, but in Mumbai City the Blues’ attack will be up against a defence that’s leaked more goals (13) than every team, spare Hyderabad FC (17). Costa has opted to field an all-Indian backline, making an exception at times when he has started with Mato Grgic, and the ploy doesn’t seem to be clicking. In contrast, Bengaluru have conceded just the two goals all season and Mumbai’s leading goalscorer, Tunisian Amine Chermiti will have his work cut out.

The Blues’ Spanish striker Manuel Onwu continues to miss out with an ankle injury, and while Cuadrat played down talk of signing a seventh foreigner, the Blues boss said he would exercise the option if the situation demanded it.