Mohun Bagan face tricky Gokulam Kerala test in I-League title climax

The equation for the I-League title is not simple, but Mohun Bagan must beat Gokulam Kerala on Thursday to have a shot at winning the title.

football Updated: Mar 07, 2018 18:19 IST
Bhargab Sarmah
Bhargab Sarmah
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Mohun Bagan,Gokulam Kerala,I-League
The equation for the I-League title is not simple, but Mohun Bagan must beat Gokulam Kerala on Thursday to have a shot at winning the title. (PTI)

Mohun Bagan will face a tricky test away from home in a warm and humid Kozhikode when they take on Gokulam Kerala FC in their last game of the I-League season, with the Mariners being one of the four teams in contention for the title.

For Bagan, it has been quite a turn of events since their 2-1 defeat at home to a 10-man Chennai City FC at the beginning of the year. The loss left Bagan with 10 points from seven games, leading to the resignation of the-then head coach Sanjoy Sen.

With Sankarlal Chakraborty taking over as the coach, Bagan’s form remained inconsistent. In the next seven games, Bagan picked up just 11 points. With 21 points from 14 games, they were seemingly out of the title equation.

But with the other title contenders struggling with their consistency, Bagan have propelled themselves back into the race with three wins in their last three games.

The equation for the title is not simple, but Bagan must beat Gokulam to have a shot at the title. Results in the games between Minerva Punjab, Churchill Brothers and East Bengal, NEROCA FC, will be key in deciding where the title heads to this term.

The visitors will bank on league top-scorer Aser Dipanda Dicka and the in-form Akram Moghrabi, both of whom have been instrumental in Bagan’s resurgence, to deliver the goods on Thursday.

On the other hand, top-flight debutants Gokulam Kerala have little to play for given that they already have immunity from relegation this season. However, a win over Bagan will see them overtake Shillong Lajong and finish sixth in the league, thereby securing direct qualification to the season-ending Super Cup.

The hosts will miss the services of defender Emmanuel Chigozie, who is suspended from the game after picking up his fifth booking of the season in the 3-1 loss to Aizawl FC.

First Published: Mar 07, 2018 18:15 IST