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ISL 2020-21: Hyderabad FC vs SC East Bengal - Where the match will be won

ISL 2020-21: Hyderabad FC vs SC East Bengal - Where the match will be won

Sayan Chatterjee

Published: 14 Dec 2020 3:02 PM GMT

Hyderabad FC host SC East Bengal in a highly anticipated match in the Indian Super League (ISL) on Tuesday. The Nizams are still unbeaten but will be looking for an upturn in fortune following three consecutive draws. On the other hand, the Red and Golds are still searching for their first victory of the season following three defeats and a hard-earned draw against Jamshedpur FC. Here are the key aspects that will decide this mouth-watering clash.


Hyderabad FC’s rigid defensive structure

The Nizams have conceded just two goals in four games so far along with a clean sheet. They have also been the most disciplined in the league with the least number of yellow and/or red cards. The two centre-backs, Odei Onaindia and Chinglensana Singh, have been supported very capably by the young duo of Asish Rai and Akash Mishra. SC East Bengal’s three-pronged attack in the form of Maghoma, Jeje/Bawant and Pilkington will have a tough time finding any luck against this back-4 along with Joao Victor screening them in front.

Amount of freedom allowed to Jeje Lalpekhlua

The Mizo Sniper made his first start of the season in the last match against Jamshedpur. He found very little joy in the first half and was replaced soon after. However, with at least some minutes under his belt, the attacker will be looking to make a mark against Hyderabad. Peter Hartley marked him out of the game last time. Whether Onaindia or Chinglensana take the same route remains to be seen.


Aridane Santana’s aerial threat

The captain missed out his side’s last game due to an injury but should be fit enough to start against Robbie Fowler’s men. He is Hyderabad’s leading goal-scorer with two goals in three matches. He has shown till now that he is equally capable with his head and his feet. Sehnaj Singh and Mohammad Irshad had a brilliant night against Jamshedpur. However, they will be up against it once more against someone who tends to win almost everything in the air, especially near the penalty area.

The mobility and commitment of the young Hyderabad midfield

Like their defence, Hyderabad’s midfield has also been one of the huge positives this campaign so far. Mohammad Yasir, Nikhil Poojary, Halicharan Narzary, Liston Colaco and Hitesh Sharma have all been used by head coach Manuel Marquez in different roles. All of them have done well each time. The onus will once again be on them to win the midfield battle against Matti Steinmann and company and pave the way for Hyderabad’s second victory of the season.

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