The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Bagan face bankmen

Chennai: Defending champions Mohun Bagan take on Indian Bank in a National Football League second-phase match Friday.

The Calcutta side arguably has the best forward line among the 12 teams but will continue to miss the services of star striker Bhaichung Bhutia, who is yet to recover from a calf muscle injury.

Mohun Bagan coach Subrata Bhattacharya said his team could not afford to compromise on anything and must win all remaining matches. They lost to East Bengal, Tollygunge Agragami and Salgaocar in the first phase.

“We can’t afford to lose or even draw any match as we are in the fifth position on the points table.” The coach is hoping for a better show from the team this time, since no fresh injury problems have been reported among the players.

“Indian bank are a well-knit team. They can’t be taken lightly as a few of their players like Sabir Pasha, Imran and Jayasuriya are capable of showing individual brilliance.”

George Ekeh, the leading scorer in the championship so far with nine goals, and Brazilian star Jose Ramirez Barreto are Bhattacharya’s principal weapons. He has also decided to include Ranjan Dey and Jayanta Sen in the XI.

Mohun Bagan are a strong team. If we succeed in checking Ekeh and Barreto, we can win,” said Indian Bank coach V.P. Sathyan. (PTI)

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