Pailan Arrows start their campaign of the I-league on Sunday when they take on a star-studded McDowell Mohun Bagan.
Pailan have been hit hard by the absence of Captain Shilton D’Silva who hasn’t yet recovered from his knee injury which he suffered against Mumbai FC at the Federation Cup. Apart from Shilton, midfielder Tirthankar and striker Maslmwfela would also be missing as both are away for National duty — the ongoing camp in Doha for the AFC U-19 Qualifiers scheduled to be held later this month.
Pailan Arrows Coach Sukhwinder Singh, nevertheless, stays confident his boys will put up a good show. “Mohun Bagan are a big team. We are a young side. We are a developmental side and not bothered much about results,” Singh said.
On the other hand, the Bagan, after a disastrous performance in the Federation Cup, look ahead to the match intending to change their sagging fortunes. They have appointed two ex-Mohun Bagan footballers, Subrata Bhattacharya as the Technical Director and Prasanta Banerjee as Head Coach.
Bagan too would be without two of their key players — Surkumar Singh and Snehasish Chakraborty – and to add salt to the wounds, star striker Jose Ramirez Barreto also stays doubtful.
Coach Prasanta Banerjee preferred to adopt a cautious attitude. “Arrows are a young unit who will run all over the field. It’s a threat. But we have the experience to counter that,” he said.
The kick-off is slated for 6.30pm.
(AIFF Press Release)