After a five-month-long dramatic league phase, the Indian Super League playoffs are set to commence in Guwahati. The first leg of the first semi-final will witness the table-toppers Bengaluru FC taking on NorthEast United at the Indira Gandhi Athletic stadium. Bengaluru FC will try to keep their winning-juggernaut moving forward while the Highlanders have the perfect opportunity to book their berth in the finals of the Hero ISL. The opening fixture will be played on Thursday evening followed by the second leg on the 11th March 2019.
Bengaluru FC has been a team to beat with their sensational performance in this season. They finished at the top of the table with 34 league points in their 18 outings in this campaign. The visitors will be under the pump when they arrive in Guwahati for the first leg of the semi-final. Sunil Chettri will try to lead his side from the front and look to win the championship this season. Bengaluru FC would be eyeing to emerge victorious in this crucial away game to confirm their spot in the ISL finals.
On the contrary, NorthEast United has finished in top-4 for the first time in their franchise history. The Highlanders would be hoping to make this golden opportunity count when they welcome last year’s finalist for the first leg. With seven wins and three losses in their 18 league fixtures, the hosts have the edge heading into this crucial tie. Northeast United can go all the way to glory this season as they possess some real match-winners in their ranks. Bartholomew Ogbeche, the second highest scorer with 12 goals, will be under the limelight against the formidable Bengaluru defense.
Date: Friday, 07 March 2019
Time: 07:30 PM IST
Venue: Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, Guwahati
League: Indian Super League
Live Telecast: Star Network
Online Streaming: Hotstar (Website, App)
Recent form (Last six matches)
NorthEast United – W L D W D D
Bengaluru FC – W D L L W L
NorthEast United FC Won – 0
Bengaluru FC Won – 3
Drawn – 1
NorthEast United FC
- Bartholomew Ogbeche and Jose Leudo will start this game for the home side.
- Mislav Komorski, TP Rehenesh, and Gurwinder Singh will miss the match following their respective injuries.
- Pawan Kumar will stand between the sticks for NorthEast United FC.
- Miku, Sunil Chhetri, and Harmanjot Khabra will feature in the playing XI for this tie.
- Erik Paartalu and GUrsimrat Singh will be the only absentees for this fixture.
- Gurpreet Singh Sandhu will be the goalkeeper for the visitors.
Probable Playing XI
NorthEast United– Pawan Kumar (GK), Keegan Pereira, Mato Grgic, Janeiler Rivas, Reagan Singh, Lalthathanga Khawlhring, Rowllin Borges, Federico Gallego, Redeem Tlang, Panagiotis Triadis, Bartholomew Ogbeche
Bengaluru FC– Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (GK), Rahul Bheke, Juanan, Albert Serran, Nishu Kumar, Harmnajot Khabra, Dimas Delgado, Udanta Singh, Xisco Hernandez, Sunil Chhetri, Miku
FUNTUSH SAFE XI