Unfortunately, this game week had one less game but the games that took place didn’t disappoint, as we witnessed a massive upset, a result we all knew would happen and a high scoring draw. Let’s get right into the action.
Pune City 1-2 Kerala Blasters
Friday night had 3rd place Pune play host to 7th place Kerala, who needed to win if they wanted to make a late playoff push and they didn’t disappoint. David James’ side went into the game as massive underdogs, and not many people expected them to pull off an upset.
The first-half was pretty lacklustre, as both teams were cautious of the other and didn’t want to push too hard. Pune didn’t look themselves and Kerala looked like a new team. It’s funny how that seems to happen a lot in this league.
The first-half ended and Kerala were looking the better team. Pune needed to pick themselves up and start performing if they wanted to put pressure on Bengaluru. This didn’t happen and Kerala’s upset started on fifty-eight minutes as Jackichand Singh scored the opener for Kerala, after an assist from Baldvinsson, who had replaced the injured Iain Hume.
Pune came back after Kerala took the lead, and they seemed to be woken up by the fact that they were being beaten by Kerala. Their comeback was initialised on seventy-eight minutes when they were awarded a penalty. Emiliano Alfaro stepped up and smashed the penalty home. 1-1 and Pune were relieved.
Pune sat back once again and seemed happy with the point they thought they had earned. That was until CK Vineeth broke Pune hearts on ninety-three minutes when he netted a late winner. 2-1 and Kerala had completed the upset.
The three points take Kerala to 6th in the league, whilst Pune stay 3rd. Pune will be ruing this game when the end of the season comes, especially if they miss out on the top spot.
Quick stat attack for you now and Pune dominated possession with 55% over the course of the game. Pune also dominated the shots stat as they had seventeen compared to Kerala’s eleven.
ATK 0-2 Bengaluru
The Saturday night game had 8th place ATK play host to high-flying, top of the league Bengaluru. Many fans expected this to be over before it started, and with the scoreline above, it may suggest that happened. However, ATK played well and Bengaluru were lucky to not concede, never mind win the game.
Bengaluru took the lead on three minutes when Jordi Figueras turned the ball into his own net. When luck just isn’t with you, am I right ATK fans? Anyway, ATK pushed on from here and really showed their class. They had multiple chances to take the lead but failed to.
Halftime came and the scoreline was 1-0 to Bengaluru. ATK must have been feeling frustrated at the fact that they didn’t score at least one goal.
The second-half started and on sixty-nine minutes it became easier for ATK as Bengaluru player Rahul Bheke received a second yellow card and left his team playing with ten men with twenty minutes left.
However, after many more opportunities to get back into the game, Bengaluru made sure the three points were coming with them as Miku, thanks to an assist from Erik Paartalu, scored the second for Bengaluru.
ATK carried on pushing, however, they couldn’t get back into the game and lost 2-0. ATK stay 8th in the league and Bengaluru stay top, extending their lead to four points, however, Chennaiyin have a game in hand.
Goa 2-2 NorthEast United
Sunday’s game had 5th place Goa play host to 9th place NorthEast United. The majority of fans thought that the game was finished before it had started but NorthEast had other ideas.
The first-half was fairly even in terms of clear-cut chances and it seemed we would be going into half-time with a 0-0 scoreline, that was until Mandar Rai Desai scored on forty-three minutes and put Goa 1-0 up. NorthEast hit back instantly after Marcinho scored on forty-five minutes. 1-1 at halftime and the game was fairly split.
The second-half started and both teams settled back into their routines quickly. That was until the ever reliant Corominas scored on fifty-three minutes, putting Goa 2-1 up.
The game seemed to be staying this way until the final whistle, but NorthEast suddenly woke up and smashed in an equaliser through substitute John Jairo Mosquera on seventy-one minutes.
The game became open after this as both teams went for a winner, both teams had chances to end the game as well, but they didn’t take them and the game ended 2-2. NorthEast, once again, deny a top team from getting all three points. The draw keeps both teams in the position they started the game in.
That’s all for this weekend’s action and, even though there was one game less, the games that took place didn’t disappoint. Onto the next one, where I am sure there will be shocks and drama.