India take on Bangladesh in the FIFA World Cup qualifier at Salt Lake Stadium, in Kolkata on Tuesday. The match will start at 7:00 PM (IST). Kolkata is all set to host the Indian team for the first time since 2011. According to several media outlets, there has been an insane demand for tickets as fans in and around the city are excited to see the Indian team in action. The Indian team along with head coach Igor Stimac landed in Kolkata on Sunday after a 10 day preparatory camp in Guwahati ahead of the much-anticipated clash between the two Asian nations.
India are coming into the match on the back of a valiant performance against Qatar and held them to a goalless draw. They managed to snatch a point after a disheartening loss against Oman in the qualifying campaign opener. The pillar of the Indian defence Sandesh Jhingan suffered an ACL injury in a friendly against NorthEast United which will keep him out of action for around 6 months. Filling Jhingan's shoes would be a tough task but Igor Stimac will hope that either Narender Gahlot or Anas Edathodika can step up in his absence to stand tall against the Bangladesh attack. But the return of captain Sunil Chhetri after missing the last game will boost the team's morale.
Bangladesh are coming into the match on the back of two consecutive defeats. First against Afghanistan which was a close encounter whereas they had to face a 0-2 defeat to Qatar. But the Jamie Day-coached side has shown character in both the games and will look to secure a win.
India walk into the match as favourites but Bangladesh are certainly capable of causing an upset. India enjoy a commanding 15-2 head-to-head record in 28 meetings but Bangladesh have managed to stay unbeaten in their last two fixtures (1-1 in SAFF Championships, 2013 and 2-2 in an International friendly, 2014).