Kerala Blasters FC took on Northeast United FC today (15/12/2017) in the hero Indian Super League 2017-18 at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi.
Kerala had played 4 matches with 3 draws and 1 defeat against FC Goa and were on the 8th position on the points table. Whereas, the highlanders were just above with 4 points and with 1 win, 1 draw and two defeats.
Both the teams played their fifth match of Hero ISL season 4. With the kick-off, Northeast United FC took the game to their feet, keeping the position. In the fourth minute, Highlanders came with the first attack as Marcinho took the first shot of the match. Paul saved the shot comfortably for Northeast corner. Both teams looked for the early goal. In the 7th minute home side came up with their first attack, but ended up in Northeast’s position.
In the 14th minute, Sefinos had a chance, but his attempted shot was high over the goal. Northeast were making quick attacks which made them loose the position to home side.
In the 24th minute, CK Vineeth scored a spectacular goal with lovely diving header on a well timed cross from the far left wing by Rino into Northeast United’s box.
Northeast United kept the ball position after conceding a goal to build the game well. Kerala managed to cut off the chances created by the visitors but failed to keep the ball to their feet. Highlanders were struggling to get the break through.
In the 39th minute, CK Vineeth had another chance on a gamble but could not make it count. A high lofted ball by Jackie looking for Vineeth was read by Nirmal. Nirmal was not aware of Vineeth’s run behind him and his back header to his goalkeeper almost came to Vineeth who was inches away to make any contact on the ball.
A harsh challenge by TP Rehenesh on Sifneos resulted in sending off of Rehenesh as he stopped a goal scoring opportunity on the edge of the box. Kerala won a free-kick for that foul and Nazary was called off by the coach to send in Ravi Kumar on goal. With this both teams entered a half time break with Kerala leading by a goal nil.
At half time scores were, Kerala Blasters FC 1-0 Northeast United FC.
Second half was kicked off by the visitors. And it was the home side who made the first attack, which caused no danger to the visitors though. In the 2nd minute of the second half, Pekuson again knocked the door of the highlanders with a shot on target. New goal keeper, Ravi managed to palm it away to concede a corner rather. Next was Jackiechand to try a first time shot on a Vineeth’s corner. But Jackie’s side foot was off target, close to goal though.
In the 56th minute, Kerala again made a dangerous attack on the visitors’s goal. This time it was Lalruatthara who attempted a shot on target, but the shot came off the post saving it for the highlanders. Kerala Blasters FC dominated the game with keeping a good ball position. Whereas the visitors struggled to complete their passes.
A god chance was created for Lopes the 72nd minute by Len with a cross from far right. Lopes’s shot was well blocked by Rino Anto with a sliding tackle conceding a corner. Highlanders were looking for the counter attacks being created on the break through. But no attempt were really working for the visitors as Kerala’s defense line stood strong to cut off the attacks.
The game was over heated as the frustrations from the visitors were clearly seen in their game. Northeast United FC were hoping for a equalizer when they had a chance from a corner. Danilo managed to get a touch on the ball by a header which seemed like an assist for Nirmal on the far post. But Nirmal was inches away to make any contact on the ball.
Four added minutes also couldn’t help the visitors to get their equalizer.
At full time scores were, Kerala Blasters FC 1-0 Northeast United FC.