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Hero ISL 2018/19 Semi-Final Preview: Mumbai City FC look to edge FC Goa in the first leg

After suffering two defeats against FC Goa in the group stage, the Islanders will be looking forward to avenging the loss during their encounter in the first-leg semi-final of the Indian Super League

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Mumbai City FC and FC Goa have managed to make it to the semi-finals of the Indian Super League (ISL) 2018/19 season. The teams have faced each other twice during the group stage matches and both the encounters resulted in defeat for the Islanders.

In October, FC Goa had handed Mumbai City FC a 5-0 defeat at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium in Goa. However, the Jorge Costa-led side then went on to remain unbeaten in the next nine games. But again, FC Goa managed to end Mumbai's winning streak at the Mumbai Football Arena in February as they defeated the hosts by 2-0.

Thus, the Islanders will be looking forward to seeking revenge but it is vital that they don't forget that the stakes are higher in their encounter with FC Goa, who is a team not to be taken lightly.

Senegalese forward Modou Sougou has been the star performer for Mumbai with 12 goals to his tally so far. It would be crucial that Sougou performs in the high-voltage match. Alongside, his pairing with Arnold Issako of Congo has proven to be lethal with six assists to his credit.

Meanwhile, with a forward like Brazilian Rafael Bastos and a range of midfielders including Sougou, Paulo Machado and Matias Mirabaje to bank on, Mumbai have a strong outfit.

However, the hosts will have to work upon their defence which has been strong enough with Romanian Lucian Goian and Subhasish Bose to man it, except for the two instances when Goa easily breached it.

The role of experienced custodian Amrinder Singh would also be crucial after an impressive performance in the tournament with 55 saves to his name.

On the other hand, Goa have a lethal weapon in the form of Ferran Corominas, who is the leading goal-scorer in the league, having netted in 15 goals. If he is allowed to play as he wants, the Mumbai defence will have a harrowing time. Apart from Corominas, Goa's hopes will also be pinned on the performance of Spaniard Edu Bedia, who plays as a central midfielder and has seven goals to his name.

More importantly, the Goa defenders and custodian Laxmikant Kattimani also will have to be on their toes against the Mumbai attack with the home crowd behind it.

The Islanders' squad for Saturday's match:

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