Mumbai City FC face FC Pune City in do-or-die battle

Mumbai City FC

Mumbai: Mumbai City FC faces a do-or-die battle against FC Pune City when the two teams face off in the Maharashtra derby at the Balewadi Stadium on Wednesday evening in the 12th round of the Hero Indian Super League.

Mumbai City FC, co-owned by Bollywood star Ranbir Kapoor and Chartered Accountant Bimal Parekh, are currently at the bottom of the standings with 12 points from 11 matches and need to get as many points possible from their remaining three matches in the league stage to stay in hunt for one of the semi-final spots.

As things stand in the competition, all eight teams can still make it to the knock-out stage as Mumbai City FC coach Peter Reid would be looking for a stroke of inspiration following two consecutive disappointing defeats against table toppers Chennaiyin FC and Delhi Dynamos FC.

And there could have not been a better opponent to provide the team a morale booster but FC Pune City, whom they had thumped 5-0 in the home fixture earlier on in the ISL.

Brazilian born Andre Moritz was the star of that encounter scoring the tournament’s only hattrick so far and the midfield would once again have to take the responsibility of creating more scoring opportunities for the team that hasn’t really managed to find the net with the same authority since that game.

Injuries continue to plague the team as hattrick hero Andre Moritz remains on the injury list with Jan Stohanzl suspended for his four yellow cards, while there are fitness worries about Nicolas Anelka and Freddie Ljungberg. But whoever takes the field for Mumbai City on Wednesday night will have to put in an extra ordinary effort to get the elusive win, which would put Mumbai City FC’s campaign back on track.

Mumbai City FC coach confirmed that top stars like Moritz, Freddie Ljungberg, and Anelka will not be playing in Pune due to injury. Skipper Nabi, however, expressed confidence despite the absence of those top stars. “We are going to miss them, but we are going to fight. We are going to give our best,” Nabi said.

Coach Reid said, “We know we can beat Pune. We have done that in Mumbai, and now need to do that here in Pune. We are in a must win situation now, and hopefully we can produce a win against Pune”.


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