On a hot Sunday afternoon, FC Goa hosted neighbours Mumbai City FC in match 26 of the ongoing Indian Super League. In a closely fought contest, both teams settled for a 0-0 draw. This was the visitors’ first draw in the ISL. The hot Goa climate asked a lot from the players, and one could see the effects of the same as both teams looked lethargic towards the end.
First Half- Linesman Denies Subhash’s Goal:
Goa played attacking football right from the first whistle. They had good control over the game for the first 15 minutes but the heat and humidity had begun to take a toll on the home side and the focus slowly shifted towards the visitors.Mumbai were holding the ball for a longer duration. It was majorly a midfielders’ battle and Robert Pires, Mandar Rao Desai (Goa) and Johan Letzelter, Jan Stohanzl (Mumbai) battled hard for possession. Mumbai City FC came close to scoring on one occasion when Subhash Singh netted a cross perfectly but was ruled offside by the assistant referee. FC Goa looked the more dangerous side in the closing stages of the first half as defender Gregory Arnolin attempted a header from a corner which was not accurate enough to meet the goal.
Second Half- Arnolin Header Hits Crossbar:
The second half saw both the teams decreasing their speed of play. They relied more on short passes and long shots. Due to this the chance creation rate declined. Arnolin came close to scoring once again when his header from a cross completely beat Mumbai’s goalie Subrata Paul but to his disappointment, hit the crossbar. Lack of conversion was FC Goa’s weakness once again as the game ended in a goalless draw. Mumbai City FC ‘s midfielder Jan Stohanzl played remarkably well despite unfamiliar conditions and was adjudged the Hero of the Match.
Mumbai City FC are back into the top half of the league table with 10 points from 7 games while Goa are still at the bottom with 5 points from 7 games and trail leaders Atletico de Kolkata by 7 points. FC Goa will travel to the national capital to face the Dynamos on November 13 and Mumbai City FC will face the Kerala Blasters in Kochi on November 12.