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Shillong Lajong FC to take on Mohun Bagan AC

Federation Cup: Shillong Lajong FC v Salgaocar FC

Federation Cup: Shillong Lajong FC v Salgaocar FC

Shillong Lajong FC will take on experienced campaigners Mohun Bagan AC in a 35th Federation Cup 2014 encounter at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Kochi on Saturday at 16.00 IST. The match will be telecast live on Ten Action.

This will be Lajong’s second match in Group C after their commanding 4-0 win against Salgaocar FC in their opening fixture. Shillong Lajong have the best mentality going into the match with the Kolkata giants who have won the cup a staggering 13 times. Shillong Lajong FC are at the top of Group C with three points. Mohun Bagan are placed second with the same number of points but only by a more inferior goal difference. Both teams will be looking for another three points and cement their place at the top and also ensure their passage through to the semifinals. Shillong Lajong coach Thangboi Singto said, “Winning will give us better chances for the semifinals. We are expecting a good and competitive match.”

The Reds will have great confidence going into the game with their star striker and Trinidad & Tobago international Cornell Glen providing an important winning performance for Lajong in their match against Salgaocar. Also a huge positive for Lajong is the performance of the player’s from their youth academy ranks including the likes of Redeem Tlang, Shaiborlang Kharpan and Bipin Singh. Redeem was phenomenal in the game against Salgaocar even scoring his first senior team goal for Shillong Lajong FC and becoming Lajong’s youngest goal scorer at the age of 18. While Shaiborlang Kharpan and Bipin Singh came on as substitutes in the second half and they will look to prove Thangboi Singto even more with their performances against Mohun Bagan.

Karim Bencherifa’s men are very much aware of the capabilities of their opponents and Karim stated that Lajong “are a very good team”. His side picked up a win against Mumbai FC in their first Group C match and will be looking to convert more chances in the encounter against Lajong after Christopher Chizoba squandered a lot of goal opportunities in the opening match despite scoring the winning goal for “The Mariners”. The Kolkata outfit did not have one of the most impressive I-League campaigns with only 18 points from 15 games in the league. Despite some recent on and off the pitch setbacks for the green-and-maroon side the services of Odafa Okolie back in the starting line up would be a huge boost upfront and along with the dangerous services of Japanese midfielder Katsumi Yusa, they will prove to be a tough opposition for Shillong Lajong FC.

Thangboi Singto also added, “Mohun Bagan have good foreigners and Indian players as well. They also have a very highly respected coach and we need to do well in all aspects to stand a chance to win against them.”

A lot will be at stake in this encounter between Mohun Bagan and Shillong Lajong FC who have proved to be strong contenders for the Federation Cup. In another Group C match on the same day Mumbai FC will take on Salgaocar FC at 19.00 IST.