Last season's beaten finalists FC Goa kick-start the 2019-20 season with a home tilt against Chennaiyin FC with both the teams heading into the new season with new ambitions and hope.
As mentioned, the Gaurs were the runners up last season as they lost 0-1 to Bengaluru FC in the title-decider. But there is a renewed hope within the camp that the team can take the final step this time around. The reason being, unlike other teams in ISL, the Gaurs managed to keep hold of most of their international stars who donned the Goa colours last season, including last season's golden boot winner Ferran Corominas.
While Chennaiying are looking at the new season with a hope that the team is capable of going all the way this season, or least, the team should be competitive.
Chennaiying entered the last season as defending champion having won the 2017-18 edition. But the Marina Machans hardly played like they were defending the title after accumulating only 9 points from 18 regular-season games.
But despite enduring a very bad season last year, John Gregory is still the manager of the club, which shows that the team management has faith in the Englishman's ability.
The Indian Super League match will be played between FC Goa and Chennaiyin FC at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium (Fatorda Stadium), in Margao, Goa. The ground has a capacity of 20,000.
The game will start at 07:30 PM (IST), on Wednesday, October 23.
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This is the first game for both the teams.
Where can you watch the match live?
Star Sports Network has the exclusive rights to broadcast Indian Super League 2019 matches in India. The matches can be streamed live as well provided you have a premier HotStar Account.
FC Goa Team News:
Moroccan midfielder Ahmed Jahouh is suspended for Goa after the 31-year-old picked up a red card in last year's final. No other injury concerns for the hosts.
No team has been more consistent than FC Goa since the inception of Indian Super League. The Guars have been in the playoffs in four of the five ISL season, also making the finals twice.
While the team's reputation as the tournament's ultimate entertainer enhanced further as FC Goa have scored the most goals since the 42-year-old Spanish took over the reins.
Departure: As mentioned above, Goa retained most of the squad from the last season.
Zaid Krouch is the only international player leaving Goa this season, while Laxmikant Kattimani and Nirmal Chhetri will no longer be part of the Indian contingent having left the club in the off-season.
Additions: Though the club didn't bring any replacement for Krouch, Indian players Aiban Dohling and Seiminlen Doungel did arrive to boost the squad this season.
FC Goa squad for 2019-20 season:
Goalkeepers: Mohammad Nawaz, Shubham Dhas, Naveen Kumar
Defenders: Saviour Gama, Aiban Dohling, Carlos Pena, Seriton Fernandes, Mohamed Ali, Amey Ranawad, Mourtada Fall, Chinglensana Singh Konsham
Midfielders: Brandon Fernandes, Princeton Rebello, Hugo Adnan Boumous, Ahmed Jahouh, Seiminlen Doungel, Telem Jackichand Singh, Kingslee Fernandes, Edu Bedia, Lenny Rodrigues, Mandar Rao Dessai
Forwards: Ferran Corominas, Manvir Singh, Lalawmpuia, Liston Colaco
FC Goa Probable XI:
Mohammad Nawaz (GK), Seriton Fernandes, Mourtada Fall, Carlos Pena, Mandar Rao Desai, Brandon Fernandes, Edu Bedia, Hugo Boumous, Seiminlen Doungel, Jackichand Singh, Ferran Corominas
Chennaiyin FC FC Team News:
Jeje Lalpekhlua is still at 100% match-fit following knee surgery in the offseason. He is likely to miss this match.
The two-time Champions made significant changes to their roster in the offseason.
Players leaving: Raphael Augusto, Mohammad Rafi, Chris Herd, Francis Fernandes, Mailson, CK Vineeth, Halicharan Narzary have all left Chennaiyin FC for pastures new.
Additions: Lallianzuala Chhangte, Andre Schembri, Rafael Schuler Crivellaro, Masih Saighani, Lucian Goian, Nerijus Valskis, Edwin Vanspaul, Dragos – Petrut Firtulescu
Chennaiyin FC Squad:
Goalkeepers: Karanjit Singh, Vishal Kaith, Sanjiban Ghosh
Defenders: Eli Sabia Filho, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Deepak Tangri, Ngasepam Tondonba Singh, Zohmingliana Ralte, Laldinliana R, Hendry Antonay, Masih Saighani, Lucian Goian, Chongompipa Reamsochung Aimol
Midfielders: Lallianzuala Chhangte, Germanpreet Singh, Rafael Schuler Anirudh Thapa, Dhanapal Ganesh, Crivellar, Edwin Sydney Vanspaul, Petrut Firtulescu, Khangenbam Thoi Singh
Forward: Nerijus Valskis, Jeje Lalpekhlua, Rahim Ali, Andre Schembri
Chennaiyin FC Probable XI:
Vishal Kaith (GK), Laldinliana Renthlei, Lucian Goian, Masih Saighani, Tondonba Singh, Dhanpal Ganesh, Andre Schembri, Anirudh Thapa, Dragos Firtulescu, Rafael Crivallero, Lallianzuala Chhangte
Likely to score:
Captain and Vice-Captain Selection:
To be updated on India Fantasy Premium!
FCG vs CFC Dream11 potential winner:
Chennaiyin FC should at least get a draw here.