Manipur's Neroca FC will search for first ever victory over debutant Real Kashmir FC in what will be their fourth game of the ongoing 12th edition of the I-league on November 11.
Neroca have drawn two and lost one match till now, while the home side have won their opening encounter against Minerva Punjab FC before drawing their second game against Churchill Brothers.
Real Kashmir's coach David Robertson will rue the fact that his team could not pull off a win at home in their previous game, despite their opponents playing with 10-men for the entire second half. An over-dependence on striker Gnohere Krizo, who netted the winner against Minerva, to score was observed and coach Robertson might look to correct that.
Kashmir's four-man back line led by skipper Loveday Okechukwu looked dependable but more impetus needs to come from the midfield where the likes of Aaron Katebe and Bazie Armand will have to return better shifts. Goalkeeper Bilal has kept a clean sheet till now and has brought about some very good saves, which would be handy against an attack-minded Neroca side.
While sharing his thoughts on the match, Robertson said, "We are excited for tomorrow. It will be a new experience, a new challenge and a tough game. Our players are confident facing a new team all over again. There is no pressure but we want to make sure we don't disappoint our spectators. We are a hard-working team overall, and I have full faith on my team to give their best on the pitch."
On the other hand, manager of Neroca, Manuel Fraile said, "We want three points from Kashmir, that's more important for us. We have time to improve our mistakes. My team is working good and we will look forward to score goals. It's cold here but that's not an issue for us. We have to be focused on our game plan. We will enjoy the game and we hope we have a good crowd tomorrow, for us as well as for the home side."
Neroca's worries are stemming from a misfiring forward line and the only goal they have scored so far in the campaign has come from central defender Eduardo Ferriera, who missed the previous game against Aizawl FC after picking up an injury in warm up.
Singham Subash Singh, who scored four times in the debut campaign last year, has lost his place in the starting eleven and Felix Chidi, who had seven goals last year, has also not opened his account this season. It remains to be seen if inspirational winger Katsumi Yusa, who also went out with an injury in the opener against East Bengal and Eduardo is fit and back for the service.
Neroca FC and Real Kashmir FC are slated to face each other on November 11. A win on Sunday will draw the debutant Real Kashmir level on points with table toppers Chennai City FC.