NorthEast United vs ATK Mohun Bagan: Preview and Prediction
In the fourth game of matchday 12 of the 2022-23 Indian Super League season, NorthEast United will be up against ATK Mohun Bagan at Guwahati’s Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium on Saturday.
What NorthEast United has had to endure this season cannot be compared with a nightmare, but their performances have gone beyond nightmarish proportions. They have lost all of their first ten matches and are placed at rock bottom in the standings.
On the contrary, ATK Mohun Bagan has been among the most consistent teams this season. They have won six of their first ten matches, and with 20 points to their name, the Mariners are placed third in the points table.
NorthEast United started their season with a 0-1 defeat against Bengaluru, before ending October with three more defeats – against Hyderabad, East Bengal and Jamshedpur. November followed the same theme as the Highlanders suffered three consecutive losses – against Kerala Blasters, ATK Mohun Bagan and Mumbai City.
December started with a 1-2 loss against Odisha, and after eight straight defeats, the management decided to part ways with coach Marco Balbul. The appointment of Vincenzo Alberto Annese has not brought any positive changes, as the team lost back-to-back against Chennaiyin and Goa under the Italian tactician’s guidance.
ATK Mohun Bagan did not have a good start to their season, having lost their first match 1-2 against Chennaiyin, but then were unbeaten for their next four matches. During this run, Juan Ferrando’s boys won against Kerala Blasters, East Bengal and NorthEast United, and had to settle for a draw against Mumbai City.
The streak came to an end when Goa handed the Mariners a humbling 0-3 defeat, but since then, ATK Mohun Bagan is yet to lose a match. Ferrando’s men have won three of their last four matches – against Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Jamshedpur, while the last fixture against Odisha ended in a draw.
Head to Head Record
The head-to-head records are completely tilted in favour of ATK Mohun Bagan. The Mariners have won five of the previous seven meetings against NorthEast United, with the latter winning only once. The other fixture ended in a stalemate.
The first clash of this season, which took place last month, saw Ferrando’s side securing a 2-1 win. Liston Colaco struck first for the Mariners, and while Aaron Evans’ strike helped the Highlanders draw level, a 90th-minute Subhasish Bose goal helped the Kolkata-based side secure all three points.
Given that nothing has worked out for Annese so far, it is expected that he will continue experimenting with the team. In defense, Michael Jakobsen had a difficult time against Goa and could be replaced by Australian centre-back, Evans.
Besides that, Tondonba Singh might also have to make way for the more experienced Gurjinder Kumar. As for the attacking options, Pragyan Gogoi could hardly have any impact against the Gaurs, and in his place, Annese could try out Emanuel Lalchhanchhuaha.
Similarly, ATK Mohun Bagan coach Ferrando is also expected to make changes to his starting XI, after his team failed to pick up all three points against Odisha. Hugo Boumous was a major miss from the team, and he could replace Ashique Kuruniyan in this match.
The Spanish tactician also played a bold move by giving youngster Fardin Ali Molla a start against the Kalinga Warriors. The move did not pay off, and against the Highlanders, we could see another youngster in Kiyan Nassiri on the team sheet.
NorthEast United (4-1-2-3): Mirshad Michu; Joe Zoherliana, Gaurav Bora, Aaron Evans, Gurjinder Kumar; Jon Gaztanaga, Emanuel Lalchhanchhuaha, Emil Benny; Romain Philippoteaux, Wilmar Jordan, Rochharzela.
ATK Mohun Bagan (4-2-3-1): Vishal Kaith; Asish Rai, Pritam Kotal, Brendan Hamill, Subhasish Bose; Carl McHugh, Deepak Tangri; Liston Colaco, Hugo Boumous, Kiyan Nassiri; Dimitri Petratos.
ATK Mohun Bagan is a million miles ahead of NorthEast United on every single aspect, be it head-to-head statistics, current form or squad strength. Hence, we have predicted the Mariners to win this match.