The Telegraph
Wednesday , May 9 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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EB to rest regulars

East Bengal players during a practice session, at the Salt Lake Stadium, on Tuesday. A Telegraph picture

Calcutta: Kingfisher East Bengal will aim to end their AFC Cup campaign with at least a point when they take on Kazma of Kuwait in an inconsequential group B match, at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday.

East Bengal had a woeful run in the competition so far. They have lost all their matches in the competition and are placed at the bottom of the table. East Bengal coach Trevor James Morgan said he will rest most of the first team players. “We don’t have any chance to qualify. So, we will be looking to give an opportunity to some reserve players.”

Morgan said that his team are concentrating on Calcutta Football League Premier Division match against Mohammedan Sporting on May 14. A win in the encounter will help the red and gold brigade to retain the CFL title.

“We want the players to be fresh for the match. The players are exhausted from the extensive travelling for the last two weeks,” said Morgan. However, the coach said that it will be nice if the team can finish on a winning note. “Being the coach of a professional team, it does not feel nice when you end a competition without winning a match. Hopefully, we will end the competition on a winning note,” Morgan said.

Kazma, on the other hand, have won two and drew two in their five matches thus far. The Kuwaiti club have eight points and are placed second in the table, behind leaders Arbil who are on 11 points.

For the record, Al Orouba are placed third with eight points and are also in the reckoning for a knockout berth.

A draw for Kazma would keep alive the chances of Al Orouba, who take on Arbil in Wednesday’s other match.

The scheduling miffed Kazma’s coach Milan Macala, who said it would give Arbil an unfair advantage.

“I had requested (the AFC) to schedule both the matches simultaneously... But it did not help,” the former Bahrain coach said.

The visitors have made their intentions clear by arriving here two days in advance, to acclimatise to the hot and humid conditions.

“We have to adjust to the high temperature and humidity. That’s our main concern,” Macala said.