We’ve come to the end of another SUPER SUNDAY in the Indian Super League. Coverage brought to you by Nived Zenith, who will be back again only on Wednesday. The action continues tomorrow as well though, make sure you tune in.
Kerala Blasters have just one more game remaining. It will have to be a massive win over NorthEast United in their last outing if they are to finish above Chennaiyin, who occupy eighth-place. Not a lot of good fortune for the Blasters either this term, it was curtains on their campaign for quite some time.
That second half was not quite what we expected. As such, Fatkhullo Fatkhulloev and Gary Hooper remained the only goalscorers in the game. Enes Sipovic’s second yellow card meant Kerala Blasters enjoyed some hope of nicking the game in the end, but Chennaiyin held on for a point. The season comes to a close for Chennaiyin, who are the first team to complete 20 games this term. In many ways, it was a season full of ifs and buts, certainly not what they set out to achieve a few months ago.
PEEEP! PEEEEEP! PEEEEEEEEEP! FULL TIME: KERALA BLASTERS 1-1 CHENNAIYIN FC
[90′] FOUR MINUTES ADDED ON by the fourth official for injuries and stoppages in the second half.
[89′] JESSEL DENIED! – The Kerala Blasters captain wraps his left foot around the ball and aims for the top corner. Although it was hit clean as a whistle, Chennaiyin shot-stopper Vishal Kaith is at full stretch to deny the winner. Excellent save, equal to the task.
[86′] HEADER OFF TARGET! – Lalruatthara whips in an excellent cross from the right flank and Rahul KP connects with his head, however, the Kerala Blasters winger is unable to get enough control on it to trouble Chennaiyin shot-stopper Vishal Kaith.
[85′] CHANGE FOR KERALA BLASTERS: Prasanth K OFF, Sahal Abdul Samad ON
CHANGE FOR CHENNAIYIN: Jakub Sylvestr OFF, Dhanpal Ganesh ON
SUBSTITUTION FOR KERALA BLASTERS: Bakary Kone OFF, Juande ON
[79′] SECOND YELLOW, SENT OFF! – Chennaiyin defender Enes Sipovic has caught Prasanth by leaving out a trailing leg and the referee deems it to be a second bookable offence. No complaints from the defender and he is away for an early shower.
[78′] EXCELLENT BLOCK! – Kerala Blasters break free on the counter-attack with Prasanth, who produces a good exchange with Gary Hooper before darting inside the penalty area. Although the Kerala Blasters winger got his shot away, Chennaiyin midfielder Thoi Singh gets across to put in an excellent block to snuff out danger.
SUBSTITUTION FOR CHENNAIYIN: Fatkhullo Fatkhulloev OFF, Esmael Goncalves ON
[74′] DRINKS BREAK: Kerala Blasters FC 1-1 Chennaiyin FC; Neither side has been able to push themselves ahead on the second half so far. There have been a few niggly fouls here and there as well. Not really the free-flowing and eventful kind of football we expected at the interval. Still plenty of time for both teams to find a winner though.
[72′] YELLOW CARD! – Jordan Murray skips past Enes Sipovic gracefully, but the Kerala Blasters striker goes to ground inside the penalty area amidst pressure from Jerry. The referee is not interested in it and brandishes a booking to Murray for simulation. Replays suggest the decision was spot on, there was no contact.
[60′] OFFSIDE! – Jakub Sylvestr attempts to slip it in behind for Lallianzuala Chhangte, but the linesman raises the flag on the far side. The Chennaiyin winger had strayed slightly offside before the pass was played for him.
[55′] YELLOW CARD! – The referee has brandished a booking to Chennaiyin midfielder Thoi Singh for a foul.
[50′] CHHANGTE FIRES IT OVER! – Edwin Vanspaul feeds Lallianzuala Chhangte with a clever dink into the penalty area. The Chennaiyin winger has attempted to go for goal with a first-time volley, but he fails to keep his effort down and the ball sails over the cross-bar in the end.
[48′] SHOT FLIES WIDE! – Rahul KP races down the flank and drifts inside to open up space. However, Chennaiyin midfielder Thoi Singh sticks onto him and applies pressure to make life difficult. Rahul is eventually hurried into taking the shot and the Kerala Blasters winger has sliced it wide of the target.
SUBSTITUTION FOR CHENNAIYIN: Manuel Lanzarote OFF, Thoi Singh ON
[46′] PEEEEEEEP! WE’RE BACK LIVE! – Kerala Blasters get us underway in the second half, they are playing from right to left in their iconic yellow and blue and hoping to build on their equaliser from the spot.
Live action from the second half coming your way on the other side, stay tuned!
Quite an eventful first half at the GMC Stadium in Bambolim. Chennaiyin were off the blocks quickly and could’ve had more than just the opening goal by Fatkhulo Fatkhulloev. Kerala Blasters took their time to grow in confidence and eventually got a lifeline through Deepak Tangri, who was adjudged to have handled the ball inside the penalty area. Gary Hooper made no mistake from the spot and parity was restored.
PEEEEEP! PEEEEEEEEP! HALF TIME: KERALA BLASTERS FC 1-1 CHENNAIYIN FC
[45′] TWO MINUTES ADDED ON by the fourth official at the GMC Stadium.
[38′] POOR CROSS! – Kerala Blasters full-back Lalruatthara has space to run into on the right flank. However, he decides to whip in an early cross instead and the delivery is wayward and nowhere near the bodies rushing inside the penalty area.
[30′] DRINKS BREAK: Kerala Blasters 1-1 Chennaiyin FC; After a rollicking start from Chennaiyin that resulted in the opening goal by Fatkhullo Fatkhulloev, the Kerala Blasters have equalised through Gary Hooper from the penalty spot. All to play for at the Bambolim.
[29′] GOOOOOOAAAL, NICE AND EASY! – Gary Hooper sends Vishal Kaith the wrong way and calmly slots it into the bottom corner. Ice running through his veins there, Kerala Blasters have restored parity and we are back to square one!
[28′] PENALTY TO KERALA BLASTERS! – Chennaiyin midfielder Deepak Tangri is adjudged to have handled the ball as it was lobbed towards Jordan Murray there. The referee confidently blows the whistle and Kerala Blasters have a life line.
[14′] SHOT PUSHED AWAY! – Kerala Blasters break away on the counter. The ball is fed out wide to Jordan Murray, who does well to drift inside and get his shot away from just inside the box. Chennaiyin shot-stopper Vishal Kaith got down well to punch it away from danger.
[13′] HEADER OFF THE BAR! – Chennaiyin almost double their lead. Enes Sipovic gets on the end of a free-kick and does well to connect with his header. However, the effort from the Bosnian has cannoned off the cross-bar and Kerala Blasters hoof it clear eventually. It has been all Chennaiyin so far.
[10′] GOOOOOOAAAAL, FIRST BLOOD! – Bakary Kone’s weak clearance allows Chennaiyin to regain possession inside the attacking third and they quickly feed it to Fatkhullo Fatkhulloev. The Tajik winger darts into the area and checks back onto his left-foot before firing it past Albino Gomes. Chennaiyin have the lead and it is well deserved! 1-0
[5′] YELLOW CARD! – Chennaiyin defender Memo Moura has received the first booking for catching Rahul KP with a high foot there. Kerala Blasters are unable to cause problems from the resulting free-kick.
[3′] WARNING SIGNS! – Shortly after Enes Sipovic’s header into the back of the net is ruled out for offside, Chennaiyin have come close with another effort. Chhangte raced down the flank once more and whipped in the cross for Jakub Sylvestr, who flashed his header off target. Kerala Blasters are living dangerously at the moment.
GOOD SAVE! – Bakary Kone gives the ball away very cheaply and Lallianzuala Chhangte races past him towards the byline. The Chennaiyin winger whips in a cross and Costa heads it away, but only as far as Anirudh Thapa. Although the Chennaiyin captain wrapped his foot around it, Kerala Blasters shot-stopper Albion Gomes pushes the ball away with a good save.
[1′] PEEEEEEEEP! WE’RE UNDERWAY! – Chennaiyin FC kick-off proceedings in the first half, the two-time champions are playing from right to left in their white away kit.
Both sets of players disperse after the national anthem and quickly pose for the customary team photo. Captains Jessel Carneiro and Anirudh Thapa will meet at the coin toss now.
Now Kerala Blasters follow their counterparts onto the lush green grass in Bambolim, they are donning their iconic yellow and blue home kit.
Chennaiyin FC are the first team walking out of the tunnel, the Marina Machans are in their white away kit.
TICK TOCK! – Just under 30 minutes remaining for KICK-OFF from the GMC Stadium. There is plenty of pride to play for in Bambolim, who will emerge victorious? Time will tell!
THE BENCH! – Csaba Laszlo has named the likes of Esmael Goncalves, Thoi Singh, Germanpreet Singh and Dhanpal Ganesh among others as substitutes for Chennaiyin.
THAPA STARTS! – Chennaiyin midfielder Anirudh Thapa is deemed fit enough to start. Deepak Tangri also gets the nod, while Tajik international Fatkhulo Fatkhulloev is also drafted into the line-up. No signs of captain Eli Sabia, who is probably out due to injury.
Chennaiyin FC XI: Vishal Kaith (GK); Deepak Tangri, Enes Sipovic, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Edwin Vanspaul, Anirudh Thapa, Manuel Lanzarote, Memo Moura, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Fatkhulo Fatkhulloev, Jakub Sylvestr
Subs: Karanjit Singh (GK); Lalchhuanmawia Fanai, Thoi Singh, Pandiyan Sinivasan, Dhanpal Ganesh, Abhijit Sarkar, Germanpreet Singh, Aman Chetri, Esmael Goncalves
OPTIONS! – Kerala Blasters have named the likes of Sahal Abdul Samad, Juande, Seityasen Singh and Puitea among others as the substitutes on the bench.
LALRUATTHARA STARTS! – Interim coach Ishfaq Ahmed has made some notable changes to the Kerala Blasters line-up after taking over from Kibu Vicuna. Mizo full-back Lalruatthara gets a rare start, while Jessel Carneiro returns to the side. Rahul KP and Jeakson Singh are also recalled for the clash.
Kerala Blasters FC XI: Albino Gomes (GK); Lalruatthara, Costa Nhamoinesu, Bakary Kone, Jessel Carneiro, Jeakson Singh, Vicente Gomez, Rahul KP, Prasanth K, Gary Hooper, Jordan Murray
Subs: Prabhsukhan Gill (GK); Abdul Hakku, Denechandra Meitei, Seityasen Singh, Givson Singh, Sahal Abdul Samad, Ritwik Das, Juande, Lalthathanga Khawlhring (Puitea)
The TEAM NEWS has arrived!
SUPER SUNDAY! – There is no day like Sunday in the Indian Super League. Although it is essentially a dead rubber between Kerala Blasters and Chennaiyin FC at the GMC Stadium, there is plenty of pride to play for the southern rivals. Who will earn bragging rights and win their penultimate game of the season? CAN’T WAIT TO FIND OUT WHAT’S IN STORE!