A massive seven points separate Delhi Dynamos from Mumbai City FC as Indias top cities battle it out in the Indian Super League (ISL) season four contest on Friday evening.
The game will be played at the Mumbai Football Arena in Andheri here, where the home side has lost once and conceded goals just twice in three matches.
Dynamos are in the midst of a wretched run of five defeats in a row while Mumbai City have lost just once in their last four matches. The stakes are very different for both sides: a win for Delhi will take them off the bottom of the table; for Mumbai City, three points means equalling table-toppers Chennaiyin FC.
It could not have been more stark, but such have been Dynamos' woes this season that it is not surprising. They've shipped an incredible 15 goals this season and scored just five. Needless to say, they are in dire need of a positive result.
"It's not about pressure but it is high time that we start winning games. That's what we've come to do here. Everything was right: the training, the team and the performances as well. The only thing not working is the thrust in the final third and the finishing," said Delhi Dynamos assistant coach Shakti Chauhan.
"In today's world, teams use video analysis. It's a big boon for coaches and everybody is studying us. We need to have an extra edge in this sort of a competitive atmosphere, which we don't seem to have," he added.
Chauhan made it clear that the team isn't feeling the pressure with respect to its performance, or rather the lack of it. Instead, it was more about turning these performances into victories. He also said that the ISL was such a league where two wins could get you moving up the table and a third would suddenly see a side enter the top half.
"What games are telling us is that every match is going to be tough. We have to play with a lot of seriousness and focus and I hope we learn that as the games go by. For us, it is really important to make it two wins in a row," said Mumbai City FC head coach Alexandre Guimarães.
His team has, so far, failed to stitch two wins together and it is that sort of form which sees clubs rocket up the league table with matches coming thick and fast.
A prime example of this could be ATK, who were bottom of the table after their first four games and are now seventh after gathering six out of six points in their last two matches.
Mumbai City have slowly and surely shown that they can turn on the heat when it matters the most.
However, the Delhi Dynamos team is like a wounded animal, and there is no guessing how they will strike.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)