Kerala Blasters will be hoping to return to winning ways after a ruthless Mumbai City ended their eight-match unbeaten run in the Indian Super League on January 8 with a 4-0 thumping.
The opposition, FC Goa, has not won a match since December 17 when they edged NEUFC and have since tasted two defeats and as many draws. The Gaurs will be relying on home-ground advantage to maintain their chances of staying in the top six.
The Blasters, meanwhile, can solidify their third place in the points table with a victory.
The Blasters have had 13 days after their club-record unbeaten streak was ended by Mumbai City.
Despite the setback, Ivan Vukomanovic’s men have lost only two of their six away games this season. One of those came in the last encounter against the Islanders.
All eyes will be on Dimitrios Diamantakos as he looks to add more goals and contributions to his tally. In 13 matches so far, the Greek striker has scored six goals and registered three assists. With six goal contributions to his name, Adrien Luna will also be a menace for the FC Goa defenders.
“At the end of the season, you are in a spot you deserve. So far, Mumbai is the very best in the league. They beat everybody, so they are at the top of the table. Us? We are undergoing changes with new objectives,” said Vukomanovic. “We are third on the table now with seven big games to go. We cannot afford to be casual because any team can beat you in this league. Our objective is to be in the playoffs and fight for the trophy,” he added.
FC Goa and Kerala Blasters have met 17 times in the ISL and the former has emerged victorious on nine occasions, while the latter have won four times. In the reverse fixture earlier this season, the Blasters beat FC Goa 3-1 in Kochi.
(With agency inputs)