Goa vs East Bengal: Preview and Prediction

Goa won the reverse fixture 2-1

Matchday 17 of the 2022-23 Indian Super League season will commence with a match between Goa and East Bengal. The fixture will be played out in Goa’s Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Thursday.

While they still have a few loopholes to plug, Goa certainly has improved a lot from their last season under the stewardship of Carlos Pena. The Gaurs have won 7 of their 15 matches, and with 23 points, are occupying the fifth place in the standings.

On the other hand, East Bengal is having yet another disastrous campaign after the horrific show in the 2021-22 ISL season. The Torchbearers have won only 4 of their first 14 matches, and with 12 points in their account, they are struggling in the ninth place.

Current Form

Goa had a good start to their season, as they won three of their first four matches – against East Bengal, Chennaiyin and Jamshedpur, with the only defeat coming against defending champions Hyderabad. However, it was followed by a poor run, where Pena’s men lost three of their next four matches – against Kerala Blasters, Bengaluru, and Mumbai City.

At that stage, it deed seem that Goa will struggle to make the cut for the top six, but they bounced back with a run of three unbeaten games, where they defeated Odisha and NorthEast United while drawing against Jamshedpur. 

Back-to-back defeats against ATK Mohun Bagan and Hyderabad derailed them yet again, but with a draw against NorthEast United and a win against Kerala Blasters in their last game, the Gaurs are once again back in the hunt.

East Bengal’s story is very different, as they have been poor right from the very beginning. Stephen Constantine’s men lost four of their first five matches – against Kerala Blasters, Goa, ATK Mohun Bagan, and Chennaiyin. The only victory came against NorthEast United.

It was followed by a slightly better run as the Torchbearers won two of their next three games by beating Bengaluru and Jamshedpur. However, they once again returned to their previous version and will come into this match after losing five of their last six matches – against Hyderabad, Mumbai City, Odisha, Jamshedpur, and Hyderabad.

Head to Head Record

The head-to-head records are slightly inclined in favour of Goa. The Gaurs have won two of the previous five league meetings against East Bengal, with the Torchbearers winning on only one occasion. The other two fixtures ended in a stalemate.

The first meeting of this season, which took place way back in October, resulted in a 2-1 victory for Goa. Brandon Fernandes and Edu Bedia were on target for Pena’s team, while from Constantine’s side, Cleiton Silva was the lone scorer.

Team News

Redeem Tlang is expected to feature from the start for Goa

Given that his team dominated against Kerala Blasters in the last match and secured a pretty convincing 3-1 victory, it will not be a surprise if Pena opts to field an unchanged XI for this game. However, we could see one tweak being made in their team.

After being handed a rare start, Devendra Murgaonkar could not justify his selection and was substituted at the hour-mark for Redeem Tlang, who later ended up scoring a spectacular goal. Hence, it is likely that Tlang will feature from the start of this match.

On the other hand, Constantine is expected to make wholesale changes to his starting XI after what was a day to forget against Hyderabad. Starting with defense, Mohamad Rakip is very likely to be benched after he failed in his tussle with Mohammad Yasir. Sarthak Golui could be back in the right-back position with Jerry Lalrinzuala taking up the vacant left-back slot.

Besides that, former Gaur Ivan Gonzalez could be back in central defense, while Charalampos Kyriakou could switch back to his role as a midfielder, at the expense of Mobashir Rahman. But for that to happen, the English tactician will have to drop Alex Lima for Thongkhosiem Haokip, in a bid to maintain the overseas count to four.

Predicted XIs

Goa (4-2-3-1): Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem; Aibanbha Dohling, Fares Arnaout, Anwar Ali, Sanson Pereira; Ayush Dev Chhetri, Edu Bedia; Brandon Fernandes, Iker Guarrotxena, Redeem Tlang; Noah Sadaoui.

East Bengal (4-4-2): Kamaljit Singh; Sarthak Golui, Ivan Gonzalez, Lalchungnunga, Jerry Lalrinzuala; VP Suhair, Jordan O’Doherty, Charalampos Kyriakou, Naorem Mahesh Singh; Cleiton Silva, Thongkhosiem Haokip.


Goa will be buzzing with confidence after a win against the Tuskers, while they hold the upper hand both in terms of squad strength and head-to-head records. With the home crowd also rallying behind them, we have predicted the Gaurs to have a comfortable victory in this game.