Chennai Hold On To Go Third

Match Report Indian Super League

Thankfully, the game between Goa and Chennaiyin was a lot more eventful than the one the day before; the scoreline was the same, 1-0 to the away side, but there were so many more chances in this game which means I won’t debate chucking my laptop out the window midway through writing this. I’ll give you the short version first as per; it was a real game of two halves as Chennaiyin’s game plan was to get a goal and then stick and that’s exactly what they did because after Calderon put them in the lead at the beginning of the second half, the barely got out of their own half.

Let’s Not Mention The Prediction League

The more in-depth version is now coming up! Beforehand, Goa came into the game on the back of three games without a win and Chennaiyin two without a win, so something was going to have to give. Unless, of course, it was a draw. Goa are a funny side though, they score for fun but their defence has let them down on many an occasion, it’s hard to imagine a playoff scenario with Coro at the end of the season but that is now potentially what we’re looking at. Chennai are another unpredictable side as Gregory’s side look unbeatable one week and the next, they look out of sorts. One of the many reasons why I love the ISL. It’s so difficult to predict. Unless your name is Chris. Meh.

I am of course referring to our prediction league that we are currently running and the fact that I’ve fallen off top spot for the first time in a while, I’ll save the rest of that until we revisit in the early part of next week. The game started with Chennaiyin in their all-white strip and Goa in their traditional blue, however, the one thing that wasn’t traditional about Goa’s start was that they were on the back foot. FC Goa failed to register a single shot in the first half so we’re focusing on purely Chennaiyin in this first half; Calderon was the one doing most of the probing as he was popping up all over the place; it all began with Francis having his header cleared off the line after a telling delivery from Nelson, there were a couple of phases of play after that and then Calderon sent one in from the edge of the box, unfortunately for the ex-Brighton man, it went just over.

Not too long after, Calderon was the one again at the end of a superb move which involved Augusto, Francis and Jeje, this time, the height was on point with the shot, the accuracy not so much as it went just wide. Chennai were knocking on the door and they were getting closer and closer. That was all that really happened in the first half; the second half was much more action-packed. Strap in. Please keep your arms and legs inside the vehicle at all time.

Calderon Turns Back The Years

Jerry got involved at the beginning of the second half as he played it to the creative Gregory Nelson who gave it to Jeje, a goal-line clearance preventing Chennaiyin for the second time. Goa’s defence was finally breached moments afterwards; Calderon played it to Nelson and his curling effort was expertly saved by Naveen Kumar who was only making his second appearance of the season. He could do nothing about what followed afterwards as Jeje’s effort went across the face of the goal after Kumar had prevented Nelson and Calderon was there to put it away from close range. Why a right back was in that position beggars belief, he got them off the mark, though.

Goa woke up after going a goal down and that accompanied with Chennaiyin being content with their one-goal lead ensured that all that followed for the next forty minutes was chance after chance after chance for Goa. Brandon set-up Edu Bedia who struck the bar from the edge of the area and the woodwork would come to Chennai’s rescue a couple of more times yet. Lanzarote had a number of openings from set pieces but it just wasn’t meant to be for the Spaniard as his free-kicks went over, wide and the odd yard here and there away from its intended target. It was Brandon’s turn to hit the bar next as Lobera was getting increasingly frustrated on the touchline.

How Did That Stay Out?

Coro and everyone else in the stadium were left wondering how he didn’t score as he hit the post, it bounced off Karanjit in Chennaiyin’s goal and somehow rolled along the line before going out for a corner. It was surreal and you have to see it to believe it. From the resulting corner, Coro had another attempt miraculously kept out as the ball broke free to him in the six yard box. Yet, unbelievably, it was cleared on the line.  Goa didn’t get another chance after that but the fourteen they had in the second half should have been more than enough.

The one thing that Lobera will be slightly worried about is that they haven’t scored in their last two games and with them not playing again until next Wednesday, they may well have missed the boat to the top four. They have got Jamshedpur on the last day of the season, hopefully, from a neutral point of view, it’ll go down to that where whoever wins gets fourth. We live in hope. Chennai seem relatively secure in top four now as they’ve got a six point gap with only three games left. A job well done by Gregory.

Until the next time.

About the Author

Jake Flock
Football and writing are my two biggest passions, so seems right to combine the pair, don't you think?