Six-time professional league champions Abahani will fly to India this morning to play their away match of the AFC Cup against Chennaiyin FC without influential Nigerian striker Sunday Chizoba, who failed to obtain Indian visa despite travelling to the country with the Sky Blues in the last edition of the second-tier club competition of Asia.
Abahani and Indian Super League champions Chennaiyin FC have four points each from two matches but the Indian outfit are ahead on superior goal-difference. The two sides will lock horns on April 30 at the Arena Stadium in Ahmedabad and the tie is very important for both sides in their bid to qualifying for the next round from the four-team group.
Despite the loss of Sunday, Abahani are focused on keeping their unbeaten run in the tournament.
“We want to collect points in India. We haven’t lost in last two matches and we want to continue this way,” Abahani’s Portuguese coach Mario Lemos said yesterday.
Sunday is the top scorer in the Bangladesh Premier League with eight goals and he also scored one of the two goals in their 2-2 draw against Minerva Punjab in Dhaka earlier this month.
“It is sad that Sunday will not play. He is an important player and top scorer of the team but we must find other solutions for his match,” said Lemos.
Abahani are likely to employ local striker Nabib Newaj Jibon as the lone man upfront.