ISL: Bengaluru FC face stern Delhi test

The Blues look to build on a positive start

ISL: Bengaluru FC face stern Delhi test

Having begun their maiden campaign in the Indian Super League (ISL) with a satisfying 2-0 win over Mumbai City FC, Bengaluru FC will hope to build on the start when they take on Delhi Dynamos here on Sunday.

In their first game a week ago, they were all over their opponents with the likes of Edu Garcia, Sunil Chhetri, Udanta Singh and Miku running the show. With coach Albert Roca roping in players that would suit his style during the summer window, Bengaluru controlled the game  by retaining possession and building their game with patience, spreading it wide to  utilise the width of the pitch and find openings at will.  

However,  this domination didn't translate into the number of goals the side scored that evening. While Bengaluru will take a win on any given day, their head coach, who was not largely pleased by what he saw against Mumbai, knows that his side will have to take their game many notches higher against  the Dynamos.  "It's too serious to say, but I didn't like the way we played against Mumbai," said Roca addressing the media on the eve of their tie.

"I think we have to just improve. When you are winning, it's not that everything else is going well. I think you still have some gaps in the team. We have to grow up if we want to be a better team and why not if we have a good chance in the championship."

Against Mumbai, Bengaluru played a 4-3-3 setup  that saw Garcia and Miku make their Bengaluru debut. And with the duo performing to their expectations,  it's likely that Roca will name a similar starting XI for Sunday's affair.


 

However, things won't be as easy as it had been against Mumbai. Just like their opponents, even the Dynamos prefer to play with the ball. And if the number from their opening game against FC Pune City is anything to go by, the team coached by  Miguel Angel Portugal, will look to  stay true to their style at the Sree Kanteerava stadium too.

With  close to 60 per cent possession against Pune, the Dynamos side completed 548 passes  - highest in the league so far  - got five of their seven shots on target and scored three goals from them. But if Portugal is to be believed, things won't similar against Bengaluru.

"They play like the way I like because Albert Roca is a good coach and we play similar styles. Ball possession is definitely not very easy because against Bengaluru we'll have to go fight for that. But I think that's a good philosophy. And I think they will play that way against us," Portugal offered.

Against Pune, it was two Indian youngsters Vinit Rai and  Lallianzuala Chhangte who orchestrated the game for the Dynamos.  The young midfielders looked stable in the midfield. While Rai kept the ball rolling and barely made any errors in judgement, pint-size Chhangte outpaced many Pune defenders, leaving them breathless. He assisted to put the Dynamos ahead and later found his name in the score sheet too.

 

 


 

And on Sunday, if the two teams build on what they achieved in their opening games, we are in for an exciting game of football.

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