Tampines eye victory over Mohun Bagan in cold Kolkata
Tampines eye win as they start Asian adventure
MOHUN BAGAN v TAMPINES ROVERS
(Tonight, 9.30pm, Salt Lake Stadium, Kolkata)
The weather in Kolkata may be cooler than they expected, with the temperature this evening said to range between 15 and 20 deg C.
But Tampines Rovers coach V Sundramoorthy expects his team to go for the win in their first competitive match of the season - the first-round Asian Football Confederation Champions League qualifier against Indian champions Mohun Bagan.
In a telephone interview from India, the 50-year-old former Singapore international said: "It is a beautiful weather to play football.
"When I was playing for FC Basel (in Switzerland) in this weather, we just needed an extra layer underneath our jerseys.
"The boys are also experienced, with some of them having played in similar conditions in Japan before.
"And, although our opponents have already started their season while we are technically in pre-season mode, we will do our best and try to win the game."
Extreme cold weather the last few days has hit several countries such as Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand.
India has not been spared, with fog descending on the capital New Delhi, and temperatures dropping in Kolkata over the past week.
With nine former LionsXII players and the signing of ex-Arsenal and Liverpool player Jermaine Pennant - who is not registered in time for this game - the Stags are expected to do well this season.
But the "Dazzler" shrugs off talk of added pressure on him and his team.
He said: "There's not really any much more pressure, I am looking for a good performance tomorrow.
"In football, anything can happen, but we will do our best."
Sundram expects Mohun Bagan's foreign imports, such as former LA Galaxy striker Cornell Glen, as well as wingers Sony Nerde (Haiti) and Katsumi Yusa (Japan) to be big threats to the Stags defence.
Glen, who played for Trinidad and Tobago at the 2006 World Cup, was on target last Saturday. Scoring his fourth goal in three games, the 34-year-old equalised for Mohun Bagan in a 1-1 draw with East Bengal.
Sundram said: "We really need to settle into the game in the first 20 minutes. If we can do that, we should be okay after that."