ISL: Mumbai City FC spoil Kerala’s party, Chennaiyin edge FC Pune City

first_imgKerala Blasters’ winless streak continued as they were held to a 1-1 draw in their third home match of the Indian Super League season four in Kochi on Sunday.The Blasters’ striker Mark Sifneos may have ended 194 goal-less minutes for his side this season but Rene Muelensteen’s team is still winless after Mumbai City forward Balwant Singh got an equaliser in the 77th minute.Sifneos swept in Rino Anto’s cross to give the home side the lead in the 14th minute. It was Dimitar Berbatov, stellar on the night with his incisive passing from midfield, who threaded a pass through to Anto.The right back did not make any mistake in picking out Sifneos, who steered the ball past Mumbai City goalkeeper Amrinder Singh in front of a delirious Kochi crowd.And just when it seemed that Blasters had done enough to record their first win of the season after two 0-0 draws in a row, Balwant thumped in a low cross from Everton Santos in the 77th [email protected] and @MumbaiCityFC ended the night sharing the spoils after an entertaining draw in Kochi!More videos: https://t.co/cVyUhTONeX #ISLRecap #KERMUM #LetsFootball pic.twitter.com/tcWlLTXW5O- Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) December 3, 2017It was a game of missed chances and drama in front of goal as Santos’ shot was brilliantly saved by Paul Rachubka onto the woodwork and Blasters striker C K Vineeth was sent off in the dying minutes after a second yellow card for diving.A second yellow card for CK Vineeth reduces @KeralaBlasters down to 10 men! Deserved?advertisementWatch it LIVE on @hotstartweets: https://t.co/ly9rzQBCQM JioTV users can watch it LIVE on the app. #ISLMoments #KERMUM #LetsFootball pic.twitter.com/uhoNHClflC- Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) December 3, 2017The Blasters had made their intentions clear from the start when Courage Pekuson dragged his shot wide from outside the box in just the fourth minute. Within the next 60 seconds, Kerala sent in a series of crosses from both sides, but Mumbai somehow saw off the storm.Jackichand Singh found Vineeth with a long ball but the forward’s brilliant turn and shot was saved. Jackichand was at the receiving end in the 43rd minute when Berbatov found him with an inch-perfect lobbed through ball but the Indian winger shot it over despite having options in the middle of the six- yard box.Dimitar Berbatov released Jackichand Singh who scuffed his effort and left Rene Meulensteen bewildered.Watch it LIVE on Hotstar: https://t.co/ly9rzQBCQM JioTV users can watch it LIVE on the app. #ISLMoments #KERMUM #LetsFootball pic.twitter.com/jy6pMhs9jL- Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) December 3, 2017Squeezed between these two chances was Mumbai City’s only meaningful attempt on goal when Rafa Jorda headed Abinash Ruidas’ cross straight to the keeper.Berbatov, who had done most of the passing for the Blasters, had his own attempt when his header from a corner flew straight to Amrinder at the stroke of half-time.The home team started the second half just like the first when Pekuson blasted his shot over from a tight angle and so did Vineeth when Lalruatthara’s cross found him at the far post.Balwant had another chance as the game opened up in the last 10 minutes, but his first-time shot from a clever flick in the box was scuffed and petered out of play.The Blasters, despite being down to 10 men, pushed bodies forward but Mumbai City held on to a draw with Berbatov shooting over the bar with virtually the last kick of the match.HENRIQUE SERENO BECOMES CHENNAIYIN’S HEROChennaiyin FC got the better of FC Pune City by a solitary goal in the Indian Super League season four clash to move to the second spot at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune on Sunday.A 82nd minute goal from captain Henrique Sereno was enough for the former ISL champions to win their second match on the trot after the disastrous opening day loss against FC Goa.Head it low and hard is what they say, and it worked for Sereno! #LetsFootball #PUNCHE pic.twitter.com/vFnq8quQqt- Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) December 3, 2017After a cagey opening 15 minutes, Pune took control but couldn’t create any clear-cut goal scoring chances. Some of their best chances of the half came from set plays.Marcos Tebar’s free-kick in the 19th minute was headed down by a Pune player to Alfaro, who in turn passed it on to Rafael Lopez. But the Spanish defender’s side-footed shot went inches wide of the Chennaiyin goal.advertisementChennaiyin FC’s best chance of the first half fell to Gregory Nelson in the 40th minute. After stringing together a few passes in midfield, Inigo Calderon sent in a delightful cross into the box for Nelson to meet.The Dutchman’s diving header, however, was cleared well off the line by Rafael.Both sides started the second half much like the first — unable to create chances going forward. In the 60th minute, Pune goalkeeper Vishal Kaith almost gifted a goal to John Gregory’s side.The goalkeeper came out of his box to collect a harmless-looking cross from Jerry Lalrinzuala but could only palm it in the path of midfielder Francisco Fernandes.Rafael, however, was again in the right place at the right time to make another goal-line clearance.Rafa Lopez makes another heroic clearance off the line!Watch it LIVE on @hotstartweets: https://t.co/NrZFubCLYk JioTV users can watch it LIVE on the app. #ISLMoments #PUNCHE #LetsFootball pic.twitter.com/Z85G7bsmJq- Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) December 3, 2017At the other end, Alfaro should have given Pune the lead in the 77th minute. After finding himself clear on goal with only the goalkeeper to beat, the Uruguayan slashed the ball over the crossbar.It looked like both sides would settle for a point each but there was a twist in the tale.With just eight minutes left for the final whistle, Sereno gave Chennaiyin FC the lead. The defender rose above everyone to thump Gavilan Martinez’s corner past the FC Pune City goalkeeper.last_img

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