Two former Indian Super League (ISL) champions will lock horns to kick off the Saturday doubleheader when Hyderabad FC host Bengaluru FC at the Gachibowli Stadium on November 4, 2023. The home side comes into this game on the back of a 1-1 draw against Mumbai City FC last weekend; whereas the Blues blew away a two-goal lead to face a 3-2 defeat to Odisha FC in Bhubaneswar, as per an ISL press release.
Hyderabad FC have won each of their last four meetings with Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League, which is their joint longest streak against a single opponent in competition history. Head coach Thangboi Singto will hope that this favourable record helps them finally secure their first win of the ongoing ISL season. *What’s at stake?
-Hyderabad FC Singto will have broken down why his team could not capitalise on playing against a 10-man Mumbai City FC unit for over 90 minutes in their last game.
That game handed them a fantastic opportunity to bag the elusive victory, but still, a point from a tough away fixture should infuse enough confidence within the setup to go a step ahead to secure three points from the coming encounter. -Bengaluru FC
Bengaluru head coach Simon Grayson will have plenty of thinking to do after his side could not seal the game after getting an early advantage in the last match. With four different goal-scorers, the Blues have shown that they can attack the opposition box through multiple players. However, it is their backline that will require strengthening for the next game. -Key Players
Joe Knowles (Hyderabad FC) Australian attacker Joseph Knowles has registered four shots on target, the most by any player in the ISL this season without finding the back of the net. He created their equaliser against the Islanders but it was eventually deemed to be an own goal by Tiri. Knowles will be keen to finally open his account with an impactful outing against the Blues.
Sunil Chhetri (Bengaluru FC) Sunil Chhetri has scored thrice and created 10 goal-scoring opportunities in his eight appearances against Hyderabad FC. He has netted twice so far in this campaign and will eye a promising performance to bring Bengaluru back to winning ways on Saturday.
-Head-to-Head Played – 8
Hyderabad FC – 4 Bengaluru FC – 1
Draws – 3 Trivia: Hyderabad FC have scored the least goals (2) amongst all teams in ISL 2023-24 so far.
-Team Talk “In terms of results, are we the happiest team? Probably not. But, we are happy with the effort and the way the boys are digging and pushing for the equaliser (against Mumbai City FC). That is commendable because, we have been speaking about transition, new players coming in. For us, definitely playing against 10 men would have been easier, as everyone would believe, of course, you can win easily against them but that is not the easiest thing. Because, as a team when you are down with a player, you work hard, you run harder,” Hyderabad FC head coach Thangboi Singto explained in the pre-match press conference.
“We played very well, especially the first 30 minutes, we totally dominated the game, we scored two very good goals, and limited Odisha from having shots on target. After that, the first goal was a fantastic strike from them and then we made a couple of mistakes for the second and third goal and the sending off did not help. Overall, if you look at the performance, it is probably the best we played in the whole season,” Bengaluru FC head coach Simon Grayson reflected on Bengaluru’s result in the last game.