ISL 2022-23: Bengaluru FC seek playoffs relevance as Odisha FC look at steering ahead on the table
After clinching all three points last week, Bengaluru FC will have their eyes set on the final playoff spot when they face Odisha FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 on Saturday.
Bengaluru FC will be focused on securing the final playoff berth when they take on Odisha FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 on Saturday at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru after securing all three points the previous week.
The Blues are six points behind FC Goa in the sixth position, which they presently occupy. The Gaurs are three points behind Odisha FC, who will try to increase that lead and climb the standings.
Last week against NorthEast United FC, a tenacious Bengaluru FC team was about to lose a few points until the clock hit 90, and both teams were tied. In the 94th minute, Alan Costa scored the game-winning goal for the Highlanders for the second time this season.
Last week, Siva Narayanan scored his first goal of the season. Before starting the game last week, the 21-year-old was benched for seven games after frequently starting games at the beginning of the season.
As head coach Simon Grayson becomes more concerned about his underperforming strikers Roy Krishna and Sunil Chhetri, the youthful forward is anticipated to keep his spot in the starting eleven. Chhetri entered the game close to the 80th minute, but Krishna failed to make an impact against the Highlanders.
"Any time you win a match, the players are jubilant. But also, we have not achieved anything. After winning the last game, we have returned to work and focused on the Odisha game," said Grayson. "We have got to do something that we have not done this season, and that is trying to get back-to-back wins. That way, we will have a far happier camp on Sunday morning," he added.
Following last week's performance, head coach Josep Gombau of Odisha FC won't be worried about the team's struggling forwards in the upcoming game. The Juggernauts defeated East Bengal FC with a score of 3-1 to end their four-game losing streak.
Diego Mauricio became the club's top scorer this season with seven goals in 13 games after Raynier Fernandez created two chances that both resulted in goals.
When Nandhakumar Sekar scored his fifth goal of the year against the Torch Bearers, he also snapped a brief two-game goalless streak. Gombau is most likely going to start the same lineup against Bengaluru FC.
"Last game was very good. We're happy with the result. Now it's time for a new challenge in Bengaluru. Our aim is to try and get a good result in the game that is scheduled right before our small break next week," said Gombau. "The last part of the season will have lots of games in a short span of time and the team needs to be ready for this. We will approach the next game with a strong and positive mentality," he added.
To date, the two sides have clashed seven times in the ISL. The Blues have won four of these encounters, while the Juggernauts have emerged victorious twice, including the victory they secured in the reverse fixture earlier this season.