Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Upbeat Dempo meets unbeaten Bengaluru FC

AIFF press release 

Bengaluru FC will look to continue with their good run at home as they take on Dempo Sports Club of Goa in their Airtel I-League encounter at the Bangalore Football Stadium on Wednesday. With just one win from five outings so far, former champions Dempo have managed to gather their much-needed confidence after a thumping win against East Bengal in the last match. 
The hosts meanwhile are unbeaten so far in the four matches they have played this season.

However, the Goan outfit, presently seventh on the league table, will be wary of their opponents, who are one of the three unbeaten teams in the league and are presently second on the points table. 

Bengaluru FC, who have played all their matches at home so far, will once again be looking forward for another impressive performance from their English defender John Johnson. Johnson, who was the man of the match in the last three matches, has stood like a wall at the back and the Dempo forwards will have a tough time getting the ball past him. On the other hand, the Dempo defenders will also need to keep an eye on Johnson, as he has scored three goals for his team and all of them have come from corners. 

Upfront, Bengaluru’s Aussie striker Sean Rooney has managed to make life tough for opposition defenders and he, along with Sunil Chhetri will be hoping to do the same on Wednesday also. 

But Coach Ashley Westwood has admitted that he will be a bit cautious against Dempo. “Our team is in good spirits but Dempo are a good side. I saw their last game on TV. They have one of the best squads in the league. They’re certainly going to provide us with a big test,” said Westwood. 

On the other hand, having tasted success at last against East Bengal, Arthur Papas’ boys will be looking for another away victory. Under pressure after failing to pocket three points from their four matches, Dempo had put up a clinical performance on Saturday against the Kolkata outfit. 

“It’s always nice to come back to winning ways. We were always confident but it was just a matter of time before we started clicking as a team,” said Clifford Miranda, who scored Dempo’s opening goal against East Bengal.

While Beto and Miranda scored for the Goans in that match, Irishman Billy Mehmet impressed all with his runs down the flanks. These three players will once again have to play a key role, if Dempo wants to stop Bengaluru’s impressive run in the league so far. 

Miranda admitted that Bengaluru FC will have the advantage, but at the same time they too have a plan in place for the hosts. “They’ve played four home games and that gives them an advantage. Any team that plays these many home games in one stretch has an advantage,” said Miranda. “Set pieces have been their strength. We’ve worked on it but it only takes one moment to get it wrong,” he added.