KOLKATA: Despite their present predicament at the ongoing U-19 IFA Shield 2017, Mohammedan Sporting Club have vowed to contest their last Group A match against East Bengal with pride and passion at East Bengal Ground on Sunday (4 June, 2017).
Mohammedan SC are perched at the bottom of the table without a point after losing two previous matches against Pathachakra Club (2-1) and AIFF Elite Academy (4-0) while East Bengal salvaged a point in a 2-2 draw with Pathachakra but their campaign had long been dealt a blow following their opening 2-1 loss to AIFF Academy.
East Bengal need to win well against Mohammedan and hope Pathachakra lose against AIFF Academy to be certain of progressing.
“We have nothing to look forward to than a positive result in our last match against East Bengal on Sunday,” Mohammedan’s U-19 coach, Zaheer Abbas Hamza said on the eve of the clash.
“Of course the disappointment is there because we did not achieve our goal but this is a learning period where these young players need to get maximum experience. I am pleased and proud of my players for their display.
It is an opportunity for us to see how the boys would react under this difficult situation to defend the honour of the club. I want the players to play with the motivation and give our fans one last moment of joy this season,” added the former India midfielder.
Speaking in the same vein, East Bengal coach Tarun Dey said he was not oblivious about the task ahead, insisting that his wards would go all out against Mohammedan to have any realistic chance of progressing beyond the group stage.
“We don’t have control over what happens in Howrah between AIFF Academy and Pathachakra but we must come up with a very good result against Mohammedan SC; we must win with a good margin,” stated the East Bengal legend.
Incidentally, Mohammedan SC and East Bengal have met nine times at this level with East Bengal claiming victory in all past encounters.
In the other Group A match at Howrah Stadium, AIFF Academy with six points already and a semifinal spot will square up against their closest adversary, Pathachakra who have four points.
Both matches will kick-off respectively at 3:30 PM in East Bengal Ground and Howrah Stadium.