Mohun Bagan host Chennai City FC at the Rabindra Sarobar Stadium on Sunday in a clash that could vary from being a game-changing thriller to a meaningless run-about depending on how things are going on in Meghalaya.
The final matchday of the 2017 I-League has brought with it many palpitations as well, but for Mohun Bagan, the ask should be straight forward. They need to get out on the pitch and get a win by all means so that they have a chance at laying their hands on the trophy after a year's gap should Aizawl FC slip up.
Chennai, coming on the back of a 6-1 walloping at the hands of Churchill Brothers, are not expected to send any shivers down the Bagan spine. However, the I-League debutants have shown that they can produce the shock factor from time to time, be it holding Bengaluru FC or beating East Bengal, so complacency must be avoided at all costs.
Bagan had an opportunity to settle the title race last week, when they travelled to Aizawl, but they ended up losing 1-0 thanks to a late winner by Zohmingliana Ralte. That pushed the Mariners from the pedestal of the favourites to the title to the side dependent on another's result to have a shot.
Sanjoy Sen is expected to line his men up in a flat 4-4-2, with Daryl Duffy teaming up with Balwant Singh up front.
The four-man midfield is likely to feature Sony Norde and Raynier Fernandes out wide, with Katsumi Yusa and Sehnaj Singh in the heart of it.
The defence, guarding Debjit Majumder in goal, is expected to comprise of the familiar faces of Raju Gaikwad and Pritam Kotal outside of Anas Edathodika and Eduardo Ferreira.
As for the visitors, expect a similar formation, as V. Soundararajan will field his preferred 4-4-1-1.
Charles will be up front, supported by Michael Soosai Raj. Behind them would be a midfield of Lalnunmawia and Edwin Vanspaul flanking Denson Devadas and Dhanpal Ganesh.
The four-man defence would feature Debabrata Roy, Dharmaraj Ravanan, Echezona Aniyichie and Joseph Clemente.
This game has all the ingredients to be the thrilling subplot in the title race, but with all eyes in Meghalaya, Bagan will be hoping against hope that the Mizo side split up, so that they won't end up being a footnote in Sunday's proceedings.
Kickoff is at 7 PM IST.
MOHUN BAGAN AC:
Injured: Pranoy Halder
Doubtful: Subasish Bose
Key Player: Sony Norde
CHENNAI CITY FC:
Doubtful: Marcos Thank, Zakeer Mundampara, Prasanth, Nandhakumar
Key Player: Soosai Raj