ISL 2017/18: Delhi Dynamos vs Chennaiyin FC – Lineups, Preview and Prediction
The Dynamos host Chennaiyin FC as their losing streak continues. The Super Machans will want to bounce back from their defeat and jump to second place with a win.
14:30 GMT, Sunday 11th February, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium (Delhi, India), Sab TV UK
The Dynamos have seen an upturn in performances of late but have failed to convert that into results.
They sit at the bottom of the table with seven points and now look to host third-placed Chennaiyin FC for the first of the remaining four home games.
The Super Machans have hit a rough patch recently losing two of their last five matches and managing only seven points from possible 15.
In their last tie against Delhi, Chennaiyin only managed a point as Guyon Fernandez’s 90th-minute goal spoiled the party for the Machans.
While a win over the Dynamos will send them above Pune, a loss would provide Goa with the perfect opportunity to catch up.
Miguel Angel Portugal seems to be the only coach among the bottom three teams, who has managed to retain his place.
ATK and NorthEast have both had changes in the coaching position but have not been able to turnaround their season.
While it may be too late for a change and there seems to be no chance for the Dynamos to make the playoffs, they’ll still look to end the season strongly.
Last Time Out
Kerala Blasters 2-1 Delhi Dynamos (Indian Super League)
The Dynamos looked strong from the start, buoyed by a fighting performance against Jamshedpur in a 3-2 loss.
Lallianzuala Chhangte once again provided the most threat going forward with Matias Mirabaje and Kalu Uche getting shots off on the Kerala goal. Prasanth K’s foul on David Ngaihte inside the box saw a penalty being awarded to the visitors.
Kalu Uche calmly put away the resulting spot kick, giving the visitors the lead. However, they failed to hold on as Kerala fought back with half-time substitutions.
New signing Deependra Negi became the focus of the night as he headed home the equaliser from a corner-kick in the 48th minute.
Delhi pushed forward looking for the lead again but could not score.
Unfortunately, Negi came back to haunt the Dynamos again, this time attracting a foul from Pratik Chowdhury and getting a penalty for his team. Iain Hume sent Arnab Das Sharma the wrong way, claiming the lead for his team.
Chennaiyin FC 1-3 Bengaluru FC (Indian Super League)
This match saw Chennaiyin dominated in every aspect as the Blues kept the ball longer and put up double the number of shots as Chennaiyin.
The passing accuracy was too much of a hindrance for the home team as they could only connect 66% of their passes with the intended target.
Losing the ball in the midfield to the visitor’s high press cost them goals as well as counter-attacking opportunities.
The visitors took the lead in the 2nd minute of the game from a Boithang Haokip shot that beat Karanjit Singh, sneaking under his legs.
Francisco Fernandes brought his team level in the 32nd minute with a header on Jerry Lalrinzuala’s cross.
However, after that, it was all Bengaluru. They retook the lead in the 63rd minute as Karanjit let Sunil Chhetri’s shot slip under him once more, only for Miku to tap it home.
Finally, Chhetri too pitched in, getting his name on the scoresheet in the 90th minute and making it 3-1.
Delhi Dynamos FC Lineup
Pratik Chowdhary will miss out due to suspension and Portugal might bring in Rowilson Rodrigues if he’s fit.
Edu Moya could also fill in the position while Mohammad Dhot might fill in for Pritam Kotal in the right back.
Chennaiyin FC Lineup
Henrique Sereno was sent off in the last match and Chennaiyin will miss the Spaniard in the heart of their defence.
Keenan Almeida will likely take his place while the rest of the team might remain the same.
Key Battle: Lalianzuala Chhangte (Delhi Dynamos) vs Inigo Calderon (Chennaiyin FC)
Chhangte represents the X factor in the Delhi Dynamos squad and despite the presence of playmakers and wingers like Matias Mirabaje, Jeroen Lumu and Nandhakumar Sekar, it is the 20-year-old that will be the danger man for the team from the Capital.
His darting runs down the flank, as well as his ability to cut inside makes him a key player for the Dynamos, while his direct running can cause defenders all sorts of problems.
He will be going up against the seasoned veteran Inigo Calderon.
The Spaniard is a Brighton and Hove veteran, raking up 198 appearances for the Premier League side during his six years at the club and his ability to run down the flank and offers similar attacking edge like Chhangte.
Lack of a secondary striker and defensive organisation
While quality defensive options at the Dynamos have been a limited first-choice centre-back Pratik Chowdhury’s season has been marred by careless tackles and lack of big game temperament.
This has already seen him receive two red cards this season, while right-back Pritam Kotal has been less than impressive.
In addition to defensive woes, their lack of a second striker to back up Kalu Uche has severely hurt their season.
FC Goa, Bengaluru FC and FC Pune City have proven secondary striking options in their squad which has helped to tide them offer in stiff competitions.
Jeje Lalpekhlua is feeling lonesome upfront
Chennaiyin faces a similar struggle as the Dynamos in attacking department, where Jeje serves as the lone striking option.
It’s strange that they didn’t choose to reinforce their options even in the January transfer market and now face the challenge of getting back into games solely with Jeje as the focus.
An additional option could offer them a lifeline during the tail-end of the season and in the playoffs (assuming they’ll make it through).
Prediction: Delhi Dynamos FC 0-1 Chennaiyin FC
The Dynamos will face stiff competition from the Super Machans, with the team looking to make some serious damage through their overlapping fullbacks.
The Dynamos do not have the requisite defensive shape to resist them with Chowdhury and Kotal out of the fray and might not be able to get away with a point.