Goa vs Mumbai City: Preview and Prediction

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Goa will be aiming to attain the pole position

An enthralling first leg of the second semi-final of the 2023-24 Indian Super League season will be played between Goa and Mumbai City at the Fatorda Stadium on Wednesday. The awaited clash would mark the return of the Gaurs to the semi-final stage since the new playoff system has been introduced in the league.

When the Gaurs last featured in the semi-final in the old format of the competition, they came up against familiar rivals in Mumbai City and ended up losing on penalties after two competitive legs of the semi-final couldn’t deliver an outright winner.

In the 2023-24 ISL season, Noah Sadaoui has been a shining light in the attack for the Gaurs and the hosts would be hoping for the Moroccan forward to be an enabling force in a crucial fixture at home. 

At the back, the partnership of Odei Onaindia and Nim Dorjee Tamang would be crucial to keep out the likes of Jorge Pereyra Diaz, Vikram Partap Singh, and Lallianzula Chhangte as the trio have been pretty effective in the ongoing ISL season.

Manolo Marquez discussed how the two sides are almost equal in quality and even discussed the two extra points bagged by Mumbai City due to Khalid Jamil’s substitution blunder earlier in the league season.

The former Hyderabad head coach said,

“We will face a strong side but my feeling is that we will be very equal against one another as we drew both games in the league and even collected the same number of points barring the mistake from Jamshedpur. They are a good team with good players but we are also in a nice moment.”

When asked about the wonder goal from Brandon Fernandes that knocked Chennaiyin out of the competition, Marquez told the press that he was not concerned about the skipper’s goalscoring form.

The head coach said,

“This is the most clear example about how important is the head. He was searching, he missed clear chances but I never feel the need to speak about Brandon because everybody knows he’s a top player in India. It’s strange that he didn’t score a single goal in the league stage and finally, it was beautiful when he dedicated that goal to his father.”

Current Form

Goa opened their campaign with a 1-0 win against Punjab and continued their unbeaten streak till February when the Gaurs suffered a blip in form losing three consecutive fixtures to Mohun Bagan Super Giant, NorthEast United, and Kerala Blasters.

While the three losses hurt the Gaurs’ chances of lifting the Shield, Marquez’s men came back into form with another unbeaten run that was sustained in the 2-1 win against Chennaiyin eliminating the Marina Machans from the semi-final reckoning.

On the other hand, Mumbai City survived the mid-season change of coach and almost went on to win the League Winners’ Shield in the 2023-24 ISL season but lost their potential third Shield to Mohun Bagan Super Giant who also have experienced a remarkable turnaround under Antonio Lopez Habas who took over in the middle of January.

The Mumbai-based outfit finished second with 45 points and directly qualified for the semi-final allowing the players a 9-day break to prepare for the crucial semi-final which will be played over two legs.

Head to Head Record

In the 24 fixtures between Goa and Mumbai City, the Islanders have a slight dominance as the Sky Blues have 10 wins while the Gaurs have 7 wins in their bag with 7 fixtures ending as a draw. 

But, Marquez has brought some semblance back to the Margao-based club as he helped Goa draw the first fixture 0-0 at the Fatorda Stadium and followed it up with a 1-1 draw at the Mumbai Football Arean where Vikram Partap Singh and Mohammad Yasir were on the scoresheet as the former Hyderabad player completed the turnaround with a 61st-minute goal.

Team News

Carlos Martinez was shown a yellow card in the 73rd minute against Chennaiyin

The Islanders have all of their players fit and available for the major clash at the Fatorda Stadium which would be a big boost for Petr Kratky as the Czech head coach is still looking for his first title in the country after losing in the 2024 Super Cup semi-final and the League Winners’ Shield decider as well for the 2023-24 ISL season to MBSG.

On the other hand, several reports raised clouds of doubts over Muhammed Nemil’s fitness as the young starlet has not even featured in the matchday squad in the last few fixtures but the head coach clarified in the pre-match press conference that all 25 players are available for selection.

He said,

“We are very satisfied with all the medical staff and have all 25 players available for tomorrow.”

Jay Gupta and Carlos Martinez are on a yellow card each and will be suspended for the second leg if either of the pair picks up a booking at home on Wednesday.

Predicted Starting XIs

Goa (4-2-3-1): Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem; Seriton Fernandes, Odei Onaindia, Nim Dorjee Tamang, Jay Gupta; Carl McHugh, Rowllin Borges; Boris Singh, Brandon Fernandes, Noah Sadaoui; Carlos Martinez.

Mumbai City (4-3-2-1): Phurba Lachenpa; Mehtab Singh, Rahul Bheke, Tiri, Akash Mishra; Yoell van Nieff Apuia, Alberto Noguera; Lallianzuala Chhangte, Vikram Partap Singh; Jorge Pereyra Diaz


The Gaurs are on a winning run and will be at home in the first leg against a side that would be low on confidence after missing out on the 2023-24 ISL League Winners’ Shield title but Kratky’s Mumbai City has bounced back from several tough situations making it a tasty affair for the spectators in attendance.