Robbie Fowler’s SC East Bengal need a result, now more than ever. They face a resurgent Jamshedpur FC tomorrow in the Indian Super League (ISL) and after three defeats in a row, something has to give for the Red and Golds tomorrow.
The Kolkata giants have played 6 home matches in a row without winning. They are also yet to open their scoring account in what is their debut campaign in the ISL. On the other hand, Owen Coyle’s Jamshedpur FC have conceded a goal in each of their last 17 matches. This makes it an even more exciting contest between a side that is lacking confidence in front of goal and another that needs to defend better.
One man has been the key for Jamshedpur FC in all of their matches so far. Nerijus Valskis already has 5 goals in four games and is leading the race for the Golden Boot alongside Igor Angulo of FC Goa. The Lithuanian has been lethal so far, and even though the Red Miners have struggled during games, he has been the perennial outlet for his teammates.
His understanding with Jackichand Singh also seems to be slowly taking shape. Moreover, in Aitor Monroy and Alex Lima, Coyle has the perfect combination of style and substance in midfield. Mobashir Rahman, Lalnunfela and Amarjit Singh Kiyam have also been decent overall, as has the young Jitendra Singh.Peter Hartley and Stephen Eze have had some uneasy moments at the back but seem to now have found their footing after an impressive display against the reigning champions.
Contrastingly, Robbie Fowler’s men are in desperate need for some inspiration. They have played some free-flowing football in patches but seem to run out of luck in front of goal. Jacques Maghoma has been the only shining light in attack whereas Anthony Pilkington and Balwant Singh have both flattered to deceive. Whether Jeje is fit enough to start is another aspect that fans will keep an eye on. Aaron-Amadi halloway is another attacker who might be close to returning.
In midfield, Matti Steinmann has blown hot and cold. He has been excellent at times and given away the ball cheaply at some others. Another problem has been the fact that Fowler is yet to find his best formation having tried out both a 3-4-3 and a 4-2-3-1 in the matches so far. That has mostly been due to the instability of his defence. The injury to Daniel Fox has only compounded his problems while neither of Sehnaj Singh or Mohammed Irshad have been completely reliable.
Scott Neville too has been inconsistent while the two wing-backs, Surchandra Singh and narayan Das have looked under confident. Abhishek Ambekar, Loken Meetei and Mohammed Rafique could also feature in some capacity as the match progresses.
Predicted Lineups and Result
SC East Bengal:
Debjit Majumder; Sehnaj Singh, Mohammed Irshad, Scott Neville, Surchandra Singh, Wahengbam Luwang, Matti Steinmann, Abhishek Ambekar; Jeje, Jacques Maghoma, Anthony Pilkington
Rehenesh TP; Laldinliana Renthlei, Peter Hartley, Stephen Eze, Ricky Lallawmawma; Aitor Monroy, Amarjit Singh Kiyam, Mobashir Rahman; Jackichand Singh, Nerijus Valskis, William Lalnunfela
SC East Bengal 1-2 Jamshedpur FC
TV Channel and Livestream
The match will be telecast across Star Network’s sports and regional channels. It can also be streamed live on Disney+ Hotstar and Jio TV. Kick-off is at 7:30 pm IST.