Mumbai City FC will take on Iranian heavyweight FC Nassaji Mazandran at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex in Pune on Monday 18 September in the opening match of the 2023-24 AFC Champions League.
The Islanders’ are gearing up for their second straight appearance in the tournament and will be hoping to put up a good performance.
Notably, they became the first Indian club to secure victory in the AFC Champions League when they beat Iraq’s Air Force Club in the group stage last season. However, despite their performances last season, Des Buckingham’s men failed to secure a place in the knockout stages.
The Indian Super League (ISL) Shield winners have further strengthened their squad ahead of the new season and will be hoping to extend their legacy in the continental competition.
Among the key arrivals, Tiri, Abdenasser El Khayati and Akash Mishra are a few names that can make an immediate impact for MCFC.
In their last stint, the Islanders crashed out of the quarter-finals of the Durand Cup after suffering a 1-3 defeat against Mohun Bagan SG. However, since then they have played a few friendlies to regroup and recalibrate.
Meanwhile, the Iranian club are making their debut in the AFC’s marquee competition, which they earned by triumphing in the Hazfi Cup in 2022 – a victory that secured the club’s first silverware.
However, their promotion to the country’s first division came very recently in 2018 after years of languishing in the second division.
So far in the opening four games of the Gulf Pro League, Nassaji have won just one of their first four matches and held two to draws.
Their recent form hasn’t been the most inspiring, yet the Islanders will have to be wary of the threat they have.
Watch Mumbai City vs Nassaji online: TV Channel and Live Streaming
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