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ISL 2022-23: Fresh off thrilling wins, Odisha FC and Chennaiyin FC face off in Matchweek 8 opener

Chennaiyin FC will face the task of denting Odisha FC’s stellar home form in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on Thursday.

football ISL 2022-23: Fresh off thrilling wins, Odisha FC and Chennaiyin FC face off in Matchweek 8 opener snt
First Published Nov 24, 2022, 8:00 AM IST

At the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on Thursday, Chennaiyin FC will have the challenge of tarnishing Odisha FC's impressive home record in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23. Although Odisha FC has been difficult to beat at home, the Marina Machans have looked strong on the road thus far, winning both away games.

Odisha FC enters this match fresh off a remarkable comeback victory over East Bengal FC at Salt Lake Stadium last week. After the first half, head coach Josep Gombau made four substitutes for the Juggernauts because they were down by two goals. Three minutes into the second half, parity was restored, and Odisha FC won 4-2 due to the risky move.

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One of the four subs that had the largest impact was Pedro Martin. His fast brace brought Odisha FC back into the game before they went on to win. Pedro has yet to make his Juggernauts debut this season, and Diego Mauricio's scoring has slowed down. Osama Malik or Saul Crespo would have to be benched if both strikers were used at once.

"Depending on the opposition team, we adjust ourselves. We change the way we attack and press. Against Chennaiyin, we will do the same," said Gombau. "We have a few players that are not 100%, but we have a good squad. Last week the substitutes made a big impact in our comeback win. This shows that every single player can play," he added.

football ISL 2022-23: Fresh off thrilling wins, Odisha FC and Chennaiyin FC face off in Matchweek 8 opener snt

After defeating 2021–22 Hero ISL Shield champion Jamshedpur FC at home to earn their first victory of the year, Chennaiyin FC will be in a good mood going into this match. The Red Miners had restored parity in the game's last quarter, forcing the Marina Machans to rely on their bench for game-winning goals.

Abdenasser El Khayati and Vincy Barretto combined in their first action on the field after entering the game, and the latter scored with his first touch to give Chennaiyin FC the lead again. El Khayati ended the game in less than ten minutes.

Thomas Brdaric, the team's head coach, will be happy with his team's performance in front of the goal. The availability of Kwame Karikari is another advantage for the German. The Ghanaian has previously served as a replacement for impact players. The Marina Machans will probably keep the same starting lineup and have impact subs available in case Odisha FC scores late.

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"We analysed Odisha. They try to implement their strengths in the game; the biggest one is offence. They know how to score, and we are working on how to deny them," said Brdaric. "It has been a short week, so we did not have much time to prepare for the next match. We are still working and know that we cannot afford to give them any space tomorrow," he added.

Odisha FC has gone winless in their last four ISL matches against Chennaiyin FC. The sides have squared off against one another six times in the ISL. While Chennaiyin FC secured two victories, half of those games ended in draws. The Juggernauts' lone victory in this match came at Kalinga Stadium during the 2019–20 season.

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