Minerva Punjab vs Chennai City FC Preview - Upbeat Chennai desperate to break away duck and capitalize on Minerva's poor form

Minerva Punjab welcome Chennai City to the Guru Nanak Stadium in Ludhiana for the reverse fixture between the two newcomers, kicking off the return of the I-League after an extended International break.

The teams had met earlier in January with Chennai City holding the Punjab side to a goal less stalemate.

Since then both teams have seen a sea of changes in their personnel as well as coaching staff along with a fair share of acrimony.

While Minerva Punjab have Surinder Singh in charge after a short tryst with Colm Toal as their Technical Director, they have also shipped out the likes of Marcus Lopez and Ivan Filatov from their squad. South Korean defenderSang-Min Kim is currently the chosen player under the 'Asian Quota'.

He makes up the defence with Loveday Enyinnaya to give him company. In fact, Loveday and Kareem Nurainwere on the scoresheet last time around as Minerva held top dogs Aizawl FC at home.


Unavailable : Marcos Thank (dropped), Raegan Albarnas (on office duty)

Goal scoring has been a problem for the home side with the likes of Victor Amobi and David Ngaihte starved of goals.

However they have problems on both ends as they have shipped in a league worst 23 goals (tied with Mumbai FC).

Trevor Morgan calls for pride from East Bengal players

Chennai City FC meanwhile have come out of the fallout with Haroon Amiri with flying colours as they recorded a shock win against East Bengal to derail their I-League ambitions.

However, what will come as a body blow for their ambitions against Minerva will be the absence of Nandhakumar and Prasanth due to injury, both of whom had scored against theRed and Golds.

Marcos Thank too has not traveled with the squad with V Soundararajan not believing he is up to the mark.

Interestingly, Chennai City's form away from home is the worst in the league as in their five away matches, they have lost all five. Not that Minerva's home form is anything to write home about with 1 win, 3 losses and 3 draws.

Unavailable : Marcos Thank (dropped), Raegan Albarnas (on office duty)


With the lack of goalscoring options all around, do not be surprised if you see yet another stalemate.


PREDICTED LINE-UPS

Minerva Punjab XI
Chennai City XI


TEAM NEWS

MINERVA PUNJAB FC

Injured : None

Doubtful : None

Suspended : None

Key Players : Kareem Nurain


CHENNAI CITY FC


Injured : Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Nandhakumar



Unavailable : Marcos Thank (dropped), Raegan Albarnas (on office duty)

Suspended : None

Key Players : Karanjit Singh































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