INDIAN FOOTBALL

Winners of the premium league compete for the slot

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Manolo Marquez’s Hyderabad FC and Juan Ferrando’s ATK Mohun Bagan, previous ISL winner teams are all prepared for the Hero Club Playoff duel. For a berth in the preliminary round of the AFC Cup at the end of a fantastic season for both teams.

The game is set for Wednesday, May 3rd, at the EMS Corporate Stadium in Kozhikode. And will be the final game in the top-tier Indian domestic football calendar for the 2022-23 season.

Earlier this season, the Mariners beat Hyderabad on penalties to advance to the Indian Super League final. With both legs ending goalless. Both sides won one game each during the regular season, putting this match in jeopardy.

In attack, Ferrando’s men relied on Dimitri Petratos and Hugo Boumous, while Vishal Kaith was unbeatable on the other end. Manvir Singh, Ashique Kuruniyan, and Liston Colaco are also dangerous players. While Carl McHugh has the potential to be a game changer.

HFC Head Coach Manolo Marquez told the reporters prior of the game, “This is a clash between two of the best defensive sides in the country. I think both teams know each other very well. They have slightly tweaked their style this season and have been more compact in defense.”

“It was difficult to create chances every time we faced them this season and I think it will be a tough game for us,” the Spaniard continued.

Read More :- Hero Club Playoffs :Odisha FC defeated Gokulam Kerala

Winners of the previous two ISL seasons compete for a berth in the AFC Cup preliminary round

Javi Siverio, Joel Chianese, Halicharan Narzary, Borja Herrera, Odei Onaindia, and Chinglensana Singh were all in good form in the tournament. And will seek to give it their all one final time.

However, with such a large gap between their last Super Cup game and this Playoff tie. Coach Manolo believes it will be difficult for both teams to perform at their peak.

“There was no reason to not be playing this game a week earlier, with both teams out of the Super Cup. But I think all the players from both sides are professionals and have been training really hard for all these days,” Manolo remarked.

“It is tough to be very good, but that is the case with both teams. So I am sure this will be yet another close game between these two sides,” he added.

Hyderabad will play without both of their first-choice goalkeepers, Laxmikant Kattimani (injury) and Gurmeet Singh (suspension), but the Head Coach will be hoping that his team can hold off the Mariners.

Manolo Marquez will play the Kolkata giants for the eighth time since relocating to India. And he will be hoping to finish the season on a high note.

This Hero Club Playoff will begin on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. IST and will be broadcast live on Sony Sports 2 with live streaming on Fancode.                                          

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