Match day 7 saw Northeast United host Odisha at the Indira Gandhi Athletic stadium.
After holding out Bengaluru for a draw, Northeast United were looking to take all three points in front of their home fans. Odisha on the other hand were looking to bounce back quickly after their disappointing game against Jamshedpur.
It did not take too long for Northeast to impress their home support. A simple throw in for Northeast saw Triadis running straight at the Odisha defense. Triadis then saw the opening to play Redeem through on goal. Redeem grabbed the opportunity with both hands and scored the fastest goal in Northeast United’s history. 2 minutes is all it took for Northeast to open their account. Odisha got their share of opportunities. Perez played the ball to Aridane who skied his effort. But the linesman spared his blushes when he called for offside.
Vaz saw his headed effort wide of the target from a corner kick for Northeast on the 27th minute. Triadis however was proving to be a handful for the Odisha defense. His shot from 20 yards out was pushed away from the goal by the Odisha keeper. Jerry continued his sparkling form into this game when his excellent first touch took him into the opponent’s box leaving the Northeast defender in no man’s land. But his shot was straight at the keeper who made a regulation save on the 33th minute. Minutes later, the Northeast keeper Roy made a fingertip save of Delgado’s headed effort. Odisha came close to scoring in those two minutes. Northeast went into the half time break with a deserving lead.
The first chance of the second half fell to Northeast when Gyan’s shot on target was deflected off for a corner by an excellent tackle by Vinit Rai. But the best chance of the entire game for Odisha came in the 56th minute when Nandha Kumar made a lung busting run into the box. With plenty of time to place the ball into the net, Nandha looked to curl it to the far post. But the keeper had his angles covered.
But Odisha finally broke through on the 71st minute. Xisco scored his first goal for his new club with a brilliant first time flick. The keeper could do absolutely nothing about it. But things went south in the next minute for Odisha when defender Delgado was sent off for a tackle on Barreiro which the referee deemed to be a clear goal scoring opportunity. Odisha were down to 10 men for the rest of the game.
Plenty of chances fell for Northeast but none seemed threatening until the 83rd minute. Gyan placed his bullet header beating the keeper at his near post. Gyan finally opened his account in Hero ISL. His goal put the hosts into the lead. Puitea could have made it 3-1 for Northeast when he stole the ball off a Odisha player and blazed it above the crossbar.
With the referee’s full time whistle, Northeast collected their first 3 points of the season and jumped to the top of the table. It was disappointment yet again for newcomers Odisha who were at the bottom end of the table. Jarni and his men put in a solid shift and gave the fans a show at their home ground.