Guwahati/Kolkata, August 07, 2023: Indian Super League (ISL) side and former Champions FC Goa kick-off their 132nd IndianOil Durand Cup campaign against once-defeated Shillong Lajong in Guwahati’s Indira Gandhi Athletic stadium on Tuesday afternoon. So do the Red Miners of Jamshedpur FC on the same evening in Kolkata’s Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) against Mumbai City FC, fresh after a 3-1 win over Mohammedan Sporting in their opening game on Saturday.
The Group D game in Guwahati begins 3:00 p.m. Indian Standard Time (IST) while the second Group B game in Kolkata kicks-off at 6:00 p.m. IST.
All 43 games of the 132nd IndianOil Durand Cup are being telecast LIVE on Sony Sports Ten 2 channels as well as livestreamed on SonyLIV
Gaurs will be wary of a resurgent Shillong
Although the 25-member squad announced by the Gaurs under Head Coach Manolo Marquez has enough firepower to dislodge the best in India on their day, they will still be wary of a Shillong side who will be desperate to avoid an early exit and who in their opening game defeat to NorthEast United FC, did show signs late in the game of their famous pluck and never-give-up attitude.
“We want to win the Durand Cup and start our league campaign on a strong note. Playing as many games as possible, qualifying for the semi-finals or the finals and so on will benefit us greatly,” Manolo, the master-tactician explained ahead of the match.
Besides Moroccan Noah Sadaoui, the Gaurs will also have exciting young Indian attacking talent like Muhammed Nemil and Devendra Murgaokar to watch out for-two names who have pleasant memories of this tournament.
Lajong on the other hand will hope that the kind of intensity that crept into their game againt the Highlanders after the introduction of players like Phrangki Buam, can be maintained from the beginning if they hope to get anything out of the match.
Jamshedpur face Mumbai City challenge first-up
Following that game in Guwahati, a young Jamshedpur FC squad will take on the might of Mumbai City FC in their first game of the tournament. The 27-member squad is here under Head Coach Steven Dias and with a plethora of local talent. Some of those talents answer to the names of 22-year-old captain Jitendra Singh, former India U-17 FIFA World Cup player and 23-year-old Sk. Sahil, former Mohun Bagan midfielder.
The gaffer, though, was very clear around his expectations from the tournament when he said after a training session, “We are looking forward to the Durand Cup. It’s going to be a good experience for the young lads. The whole squad is excited to play with the best teams in the country and with every competitive minute they gain, it provides a great opportunity for them to learn and grow. We will give our best to win against all the teams in our group.”
The Islanders under Des Buckingham have an embarrassment of riches and it remains to be seen which players and combination they go with on Tuesday. Whichever that maybe, it will be a baptism by fire for the young Men of Steel.
Ticket Information in detail
India’s leading entertainment destination BookMyShow has been roped in as exclusive ticketing partners for the 132nd IndianOil Durand Cup.
About Durand Cup
A symbol of India’s football history and culture, the Durand Cup is Asia’s oldest and the world’s third oldest football tournament. Organized by the Indian Armed Forces, the Durand Cup has been the breeding ground for India’s best footballing talent, over the years.
The inaugural edition happened in Shimla in 1888, when it started off as an Army Cup, open only to the British Indian Army troops in India, but soon opened up to civilian teams. Named after its founder, Sir Mortimer Durand, Foreign Secretary of British India from 1884 to 1889
the iconic tournament reached its 132nd edition in 2023. Mohun Bagan and East Bengal have been the most successful teams, winning the tournament 16 times each.