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ISL: Bengaluru look to end seven-game winless streak, face Chennaiyin challenge

With the league almost at the halfway stage, it would take something special from Bengaluru to make it to the top four and qualify for the play-offs

Published: 29th December 2021 08:48 PM  |   Last Updated: 29th December 2021 08:48 PM   |  A+A-

Sunil Chhetri, who has struggled so far, did not start in the last two matches (Photo | BFC Media)

Express News Service

BENGALURU: It has been more than a month since Bengaluru FC's last win in the ongoing Indian Super League. After their victory over NorthEast United on November 20, they have played seven matches without a single win, an unhappy run that has increased pressure on the Blues to deliver when they meet Chennaiyin FC at the Tilak Maidan in Vasco on Thursday.

Both the teams have recharged their batteries with the Blues having not played a single game in the last ten days while their opponents have not featured for eight days. It also means that Bengaluru and Chennaiyin got some solid time to look into their last few games and work on weaknesses to come up with an improved performance for the remainder of the competition.

"The mood (of the camp) is good. Of course, we had enough time to train. We trained on several things, on tactical options and some other ideas to improve upon the game," said BFC head coach Marco Pezzaiuoli's on Wednesday. The gaffer wants his team to be good in possession to try and nullify Chennaiyin's strengths. "Chennaiyin have also had rest so their speed and sharpness will be back. We need to be focused on ourselves because they have some really good players. They are playing different kinds of systems. They are very good in attacking transitions and we need to keep the ball better, especially in midfield."

In fact, with the league almost at the halfway stage, it would take something special from Bengaluru to make it to the top four and qualify for the play-offs. For that to happen, they need to up their game by leaps and bounds in all departments. It is clear that Bengaluru are desperate to get back to winning so much so that their star player Sunil Chhetri, who has struggled so far, did not start in the last two matches.

The situation is slightly better for Chennaiyin head coach Bozidar Bandovic and his men, who can jump to the top four with a victory. However, the problem for Chennaiyin has been regarding goals. Despite being placed fifth, they have just scored six times in the seven matches, the lowest in the league so far. Bandovic is aware of the importance of finding the back of the net and said that his players have been digging deep during training to improve that aspect of the game.

"In most of the games, we made chances. It's little pressure [of not scoring many goals], but we need to learn to deal with this pressure and relax more; goals will come. We are also trying to improve finishing through our training sessions," Bandovic said.



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