Shillong, March 3 (IANS) Shillong Lajong will be up against table-toppers East Bengal on Saturday in what will be one of the rigorous tests of the I-league football season for the hosts.
On a high, Shillong have won five of their last seven games and a victory over the table-toppers will set them up for a top four finish in the I-League, according to the national football league’s release.
The visitors, on the other hand, are looking to create history by winning their maiden I-League title and the Shillong outing assumes utmost significance as far as fulfilling their league ambition is concerned.
While the hosts come to the tie on the back of a 4-1 away win over Chennai City, East Bengal completed their first-ever double win over Bengaluru FC.
Despite a dream run at home, Shillong head coach Thangboi Singto is aware of the challenge at the store on Saturday.
“The match against East Bengal will be our biggest test so far. Till now we have beaten teams which are below us in the standings,” Singto said in the pre-match conference here.
“To improve our position we have to beat sides which are ahead of us. So that way it’s a crucial encounter tomorrow,” he added.
Shillong coach also lavished praises on the opponents stating that the Red and Golds are the most balanced side in the I-League this season and have a strong bench.
Singto, however, underlined that Lajong have a good record against the Red and Golds and the hosts can net full three points.
It may be mentioned that of the six occasions that Shillong have hosted East Bengal in the I-League the Reds have won four times, which is the Club’s best win percentage at home against any long term I-League club.
Asserting that the table-toppers tag did not put any additional pressure on his side, Morgan said: “It’s all up to us. We know we are in a good position and we know what we need to do tomorrow. But nevertheless, we expect a very tough game.”
Replying to a query on East Bengal’s not-so-good track record against the Reds, Morgan said: “We can’t hide behind a bad track record. We can’t give excuses.’