ISL 2024: Dimi Petratos and Lallianzuala Chhangte could be the game-changers

Dimi Petratos and Lallianzuala Chhangte
Dimi Petratos and Lallianzuala Chhangte (PC: ISL/X)

The stage will be set at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on May 4, 2024, when Mohun Bagan Super Giant (MBSG) take on Mumbai City FC (MCFC) in the final match of the ongoing ISL season. Bagan beat Mumbai in the race for the ISL shield, and both teams will now fight for another trophy. On the day of a big final, some players need to step up their game and become game-changers for their respective teams. Fans will keep their eyes on these quality players from both sides who have the potential to turn things in favour of their team.

Mohun Bagan Super Giant

Dimi Petratos

Dimi Petratos with his teammates
Dimi Petratos with his teammates (PC: ISL/X)

During the second leg of the semi-final against Odisha at Salt Lake Stadium, Mohun Bagan fans came up with a tifo where they portrayed that the baton representing the historic club’s legacy had been passed from former icons to this Aussie. Dimi Petratos has been that effective for the Green-and-maroon brigade since joining them in July 2022. Last season, he scored 12 goals along with seven assists, while there have been 17 goal involvements in 21 games (10 goals, seven assists) this campaign.

His consistency has been one of the reasons for MBSG’s recent success. Even in several matches where he did not score, he made runs into the box and created chances for others. His passion for the game, for the club, and the mutual respect between him and his fans is unquestionable. Petratos also won back-to-back ISL Player of the Month awards at the end of the regular season.        

Manvir Singh

Manvir Singh vs Odisha FC
Manvir Singh vs Odisha FC (PC: ISL/X)

The last ISL season was a disaster for Manvir Singh, as he managed only two goals and four assists in 18 games. There were several occasions where he had opportunities to cross or pass the ball to others, which could have been resulted in goals. But instead of doing that, he usually went for glory and wasted those chances. The fans criticised him a lot, and many eyes were on him at the beginning of the current edition.

But this season, Manvir has shown consistency and improved himself as a team player. He has scored four goals so far, but what is far more impressive are the seven assists from 22 games. He has also helped his defenders by tracking back and with timely tackles. In the first leg of the semi-final against Odisha in Bhubaneswar, Manvir scored Bagan’s only goal, which gave them something to build on ahead of the home leg.  

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Mumbai City FC

Lallianzuala Chhangte

Lallianzuala Chhangte vs FC Goa
Lallianzuala Chhangte vs FC Goa (PC: ISL/X)

This Islander is known for his pace, dribbling ability and knack for finding space in and around the penalty area. In this ISL season, Chhangte has scored 10 goals and assisted six times in 24 games. Among those, six goals and one assist have come in the last five matches. Chhangte has proved himself a big player by scoring three goals against FC Goa over the two legs of the semi-final.

Against FC Goa in the first leg of that semi, and against MBSG in the last league game, he did not lose hope and kept pushing for the goal that was he eventually rewarded with. The never-say-die attitude has worked like magic for MCFC. Subhasish Bose, the Bagan skipper, had some trouble in the semi-final while facing Odisha’s Roy Krishna. Chhangte will look to exploit that area by winning the duel against Bose in the final.        

Vikram Partap Singh

Vikram Partap Singh celebrating with teammates
Vikram Partap Singh celebrating with teammates (PC: ISL/X)

This season has been a fruitful one for this Mumbai right winger. Having scored eight goals and registered four assists so far, Vikram Partap Singh has been the talk of the town, especially after the hat-trick against NorthEast United at home. Even in the semi-final win over Goa, he scored one and assisted another over the two legs.

He was suspended for the last league game against Mohun Bagan. Now, in the final, he will look to pose a threat to the Bagan defence alongside Chhangte. Since Petr Kratky has taken charge of the team, Vikram has managed to revive himself, though consistency remains an issue.

Also Read: Jayesh Rane Exclusive: ‘Want to make this my best ISL Final by defeating Mohun Bagan’