In what is going to be the last game of matchday five of the Indian Super League, Robert Jarni’s NorthEast United are now braced for a stern test, with Jorge Costa’s Mumbai City FC scheduled to pay them a visit at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati, on Wednesday, November 27.

The two teams have been at variance, as NorthEast are just one of the three teams who are yet to lose this season, while Mumbai are coming on the back of two back to back defeats. Injuries have surely played a bit part in Costa’s tenure so far, but given the dubious nature the league carries, no one can really foresee what lies in store.

If the statistics are anything to go by, Mumbai do carry an upper hand given that they have won six of their 10 meetings with NorthEast and have lost just thrice. Their last meeting, however, ended in a 2-0 win for the team from Guwahati where now Mumbai City FC midfielder, Rowllin Borges broke the deadlock in as early as the fourth minute.

So now as the game rolls on, here’s what the stats are predicting:

The uncanny figures

Mumbai, who have conceded eight goals in their last two games, are unbeaten away from home this season. But however positive the stat may sound; they have failed to score a goal in the first half of all four of their games so far. North East United, on the other hand, have conceded just one goal in the first half this season.

Having scored five goals in four matches so far, NorthEast United have registered their second-best tally after four games. Regardless of their reputation of being the Darkhorse, their performance at home have rather been underwhelming. Since the start of the last season, the Highlanders have played seven draws at home, which is most by any side in the league.

They are rather more a dominant unit away from their base, having garnered 21 points since last season; most by any team during the time.

Be it as it may, the Highlanders will look to strike the first blow simply because they are yet to lose a fixture in every game they have scored first.

NorthEast United FC




After Scoring 1st




After Conceding 1st




Asamoah Gyan vs Paulo Machado

Experienced campaigners Asamoah Gyan and Paulo Machado have been the driving force of their respective teams, and this certainly won’t be the first time they would square off against each other. The two have crossed paths in France’s Ligue 1 earlier in their career and Gyan, in fact, has always got the better of the Portuguese.

The first time they met was in the 2008/09 Ligue 1 season where Gyan was playing for Stade Rennais, while Machado was plying his trade with AS Saint-Etienne. The subsequent season saw the former moving to Toulouse, but that didn’t stop Gyan in underlining his authority. A goal and an assist in the first game of the 2009/10 season was followed by a brace in the return leg, as the Ghanaian stood out tall between the two.

Players to watch – Redeem Tlang:

Redeem Tlang, who has played every minute ISL action this season, has been an absolute revelation for NorthEast United this season and is the joint highest Indian goal scorer in the ISL this season along with Sunil Chhetri (2 goals). And given that both of his goals have come in Guwahati, Mumbai are braced for an uphill task at hand. The 24-year-old Meghalaya born winger has attempted as many as eight shots on goal with an accuracy of 50%, which is second-most by an Indian midfielder this season.

Mohamed Larbi:

Midfielder Mohamed Larbi has been an underrated figure this season. Just like Tlang, the Tunisian has completed full 90 minutes in all four games and has a goal and two assists to his name. Despite playing centrally, the 32-year-old has delivered 11 crosses this season and played three key passes.

Feature image courtesy: Twitter / @MumbaiCityFC