Kolkata, May 16: It will be a dress rehearsal for Mohun Bagan ahead of the Federation Cup final while Bengaluru FC will look to push for the knockout berth when the two sides lock horns in a Group E AFC Cup encounter at the Rabindra Sarobar Stadium here on Wednesday (May 17).
The two sides will meet again on Sunday (May 21) in the Federation Cup final where Mohun Bagan will aim to defend their crown and bag their first silverware of the season.
Kickoff: 7 PM (IST)
Venue: Rabindra Sarobar Stadium, Kolkata
Bengaluru, who reached the final of the AFC Cup last season, beat surprise I-League champions Aizawl FC to reach the summit clash of the Federation Cup.
Though they have lost skipper and talisman Sunil Chhetri to injury, Bengaluru will also want to upset Mohun Bagan's applecart and win their second Federation Cup title.
Mohun Bagan are high on confidence after their 2-0 victory over arch-rivals East Bengal in the semi-final.
The green and maroon brigade topped Group B with seven points from three matches and an unbeaten record while Bengaluru finished behind them having four points from three outings.
The pair played out a 1-1 draw in their group engagement.
Bengaluru beat them 2-1 in the AFC Cup first leg meeting while Mohun Bagan thrashed the Blues at the Rabindra Sarobar Stadium 3-0 in the I-League where they finished second behind Aizawl.
In their first meeting in the I-League, it was a goalless affair.
Mohun Bagan, out of the AFC Cup knockouts race, are likely to field a second-string side as they have their eyes trained on the final on Sunday.
Bengaluru will be without the services of Chhetri (injured), Harmajyot Singh Khabra and midfielder Eugeneson Lyngdoh as the duo are suspended.
The Albert Roca-coached side have everything to play for as they are top of Group E with nine points from four outings.
Maldives' Maziya Sports & Recreation are also on nine points from four matches but lie second due to inferior head-to-head record.
Bengaluru beat Maziya by a solitary goal in the latter's own den.
Mohun Bagan have three points from four games in the AFC Cup group stages. Sanjoy Sen's men have lost thrice in the continental competition.
Dhaka Abahani Limited from Bangladesh, the other team in the group, are also out of reckoning for a knockout berth lying last with three points from four ties.