New signing Hugo Boumous scored the solitary goal in the second half as Indian Super League (ISL) outfit Mumbai City FC beat Bengaluru FC 1-0 in a friendly match on Friday at the Nagoa football ground in Goa. Ahmed Jahouh, Bartholomew Ogbeche, Hugo Boumous all started the game for the Islanders.
Mumbai were coming off the back of a 3-2 win over Odisha FC a few days back while Bengaluru drew their previous friendly against Hyderabad FC. This was both the side’s last pre-season friendly with their first matches of the season being scheduled on the 21st and 22nd against NorthEast United and FC Goa respectively.
The Islanders’ head coach Sergio Lobera went with a slightly tweaked line-up as he started two of his two new signings, Adam Le Fondre and Hernan Santana, on the right wing and at the heart of defence respectively.
Englishman Le Fondre is primarily a centre-forward and having scored 21 goals for Sydney FC in the A-League last season, many would have predicted him to start alongside or just in front of fellow new signing Bart Ogbeche. Lobera’s usage of him today had shades of how he used former Real Zaragoza midfielder Manuel Lanzarote in his first season at FC Goa, as a roaming right-sided attacker with the license to come inside in support.
Hernan Santana on the other hand is more adept at the centre of midfield having played there for UD Las Palmas and Sporting Gijon previously. However, Lobera seems to have gone for his passing ability to build attacks from the back as he used him as one of the central defenders for today’s match against a counter-attacking Bengaluru side.
Here is how Mumbai City lined up for the match: Amrinder, Rakip, Santana, Sarthak, Vignesh, Jahouh, Rowllin, Boumous, Le Fondre, Raynier, Ogbeche.
Bengaluru FC also fielded a strong XI with national team stars Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Sunil Chhetri, Udanta Singh, Ashique Kuruniyan, all starting. Fran Glez and Kristian Opseth, the two late arrivals, also got important minutes in the second half.
Here's BFC's starting XI: Gurpreet, Khabra, Pratik, Juanan, Ashique, Suresh, Erik, Udanta, Cleiton, Semboi, Chhetri.
Meanwhile ATK Mohun Bagan have backed out of the friendly match against FC Goa, which was supposed to be held on Novermber 14, citing 'injuries' sustained during training.
Here is the full list of results and upcoming fixtures of pre-season friendlies:
October 25: Kerala Blasters 2-0 Hyderabad FC
October 30: Kerala Blasters 0-0 Mumbai City
November 1: FC Goa 3-2 Jamshedpur FC
November 2: Mumbai City 1-0 Chennaiyin FC
November 7: Bengaluru FC 1-1 Hyderabad FC
November 8: FC Goa 3-0 Chennaiyin FC
November 10: Odisha FC 2-3 Mumbai City
November 10: NEUFC 0-0 Jamshedpur FC
November 10: SC East Bengal 3-1 Kerala Blasters
November 11: FC Goa 2-4 Hyderabad FC
November 13: Bengaluru FC 0-1 Mumbai City
November 14: Kerala vs Jamshedpur FC
November 15: Odisha FC vs Chennaiyin FC
November 20: SC East Bengal vs Jamshedpur FC