Two consecutive defeats later, Hyderabad successfully clinch the very much required 3 points in the land of Nawabs on Saturday.
With injuries and suspensions plaguing the Nawabs, head coach Phil Brown’s crucial decisions finally paid off, ending match day 14 with a sigh of relief with a thumping 2-1 victory.
The MC Balayogi Stadium saw a very confident start from Kerala with Sahal dominating the midfield right from the 4th minute, attempting to intimidate the morale of the already crippled Hyderabad team.
The 10th minute approaches with Kerala’s Gianni Zuiveroon being stretched away with a seemingly painful hamstring injury. His spot is then replaced with Raju Gaikwad, who immediately proves his presence in the match 7 minutes later, with the crucial block to stop the menacing run from Marcelinho.
Rahul KP smacks one from 20 yards only to watch it bounce wide away at the 22nd minute. The 19 year old however struck back at the 34th minute, with the assist from Sahal Abdul Samad, giving Kerala the lead.
(HALF TIME : Hyderabad 0-1 Kerala 31′).
A desperate Hyderabad squad kicks off halftime hoping to pursue a more aggressive approach to overturn Kerala’s lead.
Minute 48′ kicks in with Robin Singh missing a golden opportunity from a well picked out cross from Marcelinho, by hitting the back of the net. Hyderabad finally seem to have found their feet.
It doesn’t take long for the equaliser as a reckless challenge by Mouhamadou Gning on Mohammad Yasir, in the box, awards Hyderabad a penalty. Marko Stenkovic steps up and slots the ball into the back of the net, giving Hyderabad the first goal in this season’s Indian Super League.
In comes Raphael Eric Messi Bouli for Sahal Abdul Samad in Kerala’s first substitution at the 57th minute. Kerala start testing the Hyderabad defence with corners and Free Kicks only to see Kamaljit Singh stand strong and keep the Blasters at bay.
76th minute sees Marcelinho try for goal but ends up wide. Substitution no.2 comes in for Kerala, with goal scorer Rahul KP being brought off in place for Halicharan Narzary. The substitution however, yields no cigar as cometh’ the 81’st minute, Marcelinho scores the Match winner from a set piece, a well executed free kick into the top left corner, leaving TP Rehenesh stunned.
A yellow card is shown to Marcelinho for his celebration. Hyderabad makes its first substitution, bringing Tarif Akhand in place of Robin Singh, at the 88th minute.
The Final whistle blows at 9:29PM, leaving the result at Hyderabad 2-1 Kerala.