- Khalid Jamil's NorthEast United were humbled 1-5 by Hyderabad FC in last game
- NorthEast United have conceded 11 goals from open play, the most of any team this season
- The Kolkata side drew 1-1 against Kerala Blasters in the last game
Their backs to the wall after two consecutive defeats, NorthEast United FC would look to get back to winning ways against a struggling SC East Bengal in their Indian Super League (ISL) match here on Friday.
Khalid Jamil's NorthEast United were humbled 1-5 by Hyderabad FC but in SC East Bengal, they will take on an opponent who are even lower in confidence, rooted to the bottom of the table without a single win. NorthEast United have conceded 11 goals from open play, the most of any team this season, underlining their defensive woes.
The Highlanders, like SC East Bengal, have injury concerns but one player that has remained consistent is VP Suhair. In the 478 minutes played by Suhair this season, he has one goal and an assist to his name.
For the Red and Golds, it has been a similar start to the season as last year, failing to win a single game after six matches. The likes of Arindam Bhattacharya, Jackichand Singh and Darren Sidoel being injured hasn't helped their cause but they have looked like a disjointed unit and lacking quality in the games so far. The Kolkata side drew 1-1 against Kerala Blasters in the last game and will hope to go one up against NorthEast United.
SC East Bengal have been effective from set-pieces with seven out of their nine goals coming from that source. They have scored around 77 per cent of their total goals from set-pieces while NorthEast United have conceded just two goals from set-pieces. For SC East Bengal, Antonio Perosevic will be the key player. The Croatian forward has looked in fine fettle in recent matches and no player in this ISL season has attempted more shots than him.