Kerala Blasters FC hosted Chennaiyin FC in the Hero Indian Super League season 4 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi yesterday (23-02-2018).
Kerala’s last home game and they wouldn’t want to disappoint their fans. Kerala hasn’t had a great season considering winning just 2 and drawing 4 matches.
This match was vital for both the teams as it ensured their spot in the playoffs. Kerala blasters won the toss and decided to attack from the left to right in the first half.
In the 4th minute, the first attempt to score a goal was made by Rapheal Augusto who had a good connection with the ball and fired it towards the goal, but it landed on the keepers arms for a comfortable save. After this attempt both the teams chose to keep the ball to the wings and not letting anything through the middle very easily.
It would have been a potential goal for kerala when CK Vineeth got an opportunity to score a volley at the 13th minute but couldn’t get the connection with the ball leaving the fans at the home side with sighs of despair.
In the 31st minute, Jackiechand took a corner which was deflected in Berbatov’s direction which he blasted with a volley towards the goal, but Dhanpal Ganesh came to the home side’s rescue by sticking his head out and deflecting it to a corner.
In the 45th minute, Chennaiyin FC had a beautiful chance as both of its strikers charged with the ball towards the home side’s goal, Rene Mihelic ran with the ball and passed it to Jeje, who was on his left. Jeje shot the ball towards the far post, making his way past the keeper but was extremely unfortunate as he watched the ball roll outside the far post.
At the end of first half, score was still 0-0.
As the game restarted Jackichand’s desperation to score was quite evident as he crossed the ball towards the goal but was comfortably saved by the keeper.
The home side also got a penalty as Gudjon Baldvinsson was brought down by Jerry, after he ran past the defenders. Pekuson stepped forward to take the penalty, he aimed at the left bottom corner, but Karanjit singh guessed the direction right and dived low and pushed it out for a corner.
In the 63rd minute, Keenan Almeida was stretchered off for what looked like a hamstring pull and was substituted by Francisco Fernandes. Kerala chose to use a pair of fresh legs too by substituting out Dimitar Berbatov for Prashanth.
In the 78th minute, Gudjon fired a shot towards the goal which Karanjit managed to get his hand on the ball, but the ball was deflected to CK Vineeth. He had the entire goal for himself but the ball was taken away from him as he couldn’t control it. The ball was cleared and resulted in an immediate counter attack for Chennai. Augusto put a low cross for Gavilan at the edge of the box, who took a shot with his left, but Paul Ravhubka made an amazing save.
At the end of the game the scores tied at 0-0 making it even harder for Kerala to qualify for the playoffs.