Hyderabad FC are through to the semi finals. It didn’t come easy, but you can’t deny it was the better side. The ISL champion will now face Bengaluru FC. Rajasthan United, meanwhile, has given its all and will remember the big scalps it has clinched in this tournament.
Ragav tries to play in Nikum, but the pass is over hit and the chance to break through HFC’s defense is wasted. And we are into injury time.
Hyderabad has shown in this tournament that its ISL win wasn’t a fluke. It has been tactically solid and has adapted to situations really well. For example today, when RUFC scored the penalty, Manolo Marquez’s side kept its head and build its way back.
Martin Chavez tries to squeeze one in from the right. There were too many defenders between him and goal, but he still gets one through but it is too wide. He is the only one who is looking capable enough to drag RUFC back into the game.
Halicharan gets another attempt at a set piece. A freekick from the left. It is a little too long, but it still creates doubts in the minds of the RUFC defenders. Chianese comes on for Siverio.
Halicharan’s introduction has ignited this game. He wins a corner down the right. He then delivers a ripping corner which somehow isn’t headed in. Martin Chavez wins a foul from a good crossing position. He lines it up and swings it in. OHHHH!!. Amrit puts his head on to it but Kattimani flings himself to the right to stop that from going in.
RUFC needs to make an immediate response if it wants to stay in this game and this competition. Meanwhile, players from both sides are struggling with cramps and the physios are forced to come in.
Nikhil Poojary and Halicharan Nazary comes in for HFC. The latter makes an incredible immediate impact. He gets the ball in the left flank and swings an inch-perfect cross for Siverio to head it in. GOALLL!!!That must be the goal which kills the contest.
RUFC needs to apply more pressure to force a goal here. Despite all its show of strength in the defense and midfield it has not created much up front in the second half.
Ogbeches steps into the midfield and stamps down on to the ball. He shrugs off a few before releasing Yasir. But the cross is poor. HFC needs to find a goal soon to ensure safety in this quarterfinal. RUFC gets a few corners down the left. But nothing comes off it.
Jagdeep thwarts Chhangte down the left. He has been immaculate in the defense for Rajasthan United today. Meanwhile, Martin Chavez wins a freekick close to the half line. He is the driving force for the side. Barboza comes in for RUFC.
Hyderabad’s forwards are dominating RUFC’s defenders inside the box. RUFC brings the ball up and there is only one target - Martin Chavez. He wiggles through a few defenders and releases the ball. But Akash Mishra is resolute down the left and blocks the cross twice.
Rajasthan’s prodigous super-sub Nikum is introduced as it tries to come back into the game once more. Manolo Marquez would be demanding his wards to get one more to provide his side with some breathing space in this intense fixture.
Borja’s freekick is parried away by Vishal. HFC has one more corner but nothing comes out of it. And we have half time. Hyderabad FC leads 2-1, but RUFC has shown great fight
Akash Mishra gives away the ball after being put under pressure by Hardik. Jagdeep shows his awareness as he steps in from left back to cut off a dangerous looking through ball from Ogbeche. A cross is cleared feebly and it lands outside the box perfectly for Akash Mishra to strike it at half volley. It snipes into the bottom right corner. GOALL!!! Akash Mishra has his moment of redemption.
Chavez dribbles through the heart of Hyderabad midfield. He is the lifeline of this Rajasthan United. But the final pass is a tad delayed. Chavez heads the ball from a following cross, but is injured by a Hyderabad defender in the process.
Ogbeche and Siverio have been isolated up front for the last few minutes. The long passes aiming for the wings are just skidding out of the pitch.
This has been a rousing comeback from Rajasthan United. Hyderabad FC has been taken aback by how the tide has changed. Jagdeep’s dribble from the left back into the midfield is indicative of how confident this Rajasthan side.
MARTIN CHAVEZ SCORESSS!!! In the 28th minute, after a completely unnecessary handball by Akash Mishra, RUFC’s No. 10 thumps in the spot kick to bring the game back level. RUFC deserved every bit of it.
Borja lashes on from outside the box. HFC appeals for a handball as it comes off Hardik’s body. Referee waves off the appeal. In the other box, chaos ensues. A Remisanga shot is blocked away by Kattimanoi. But the keeper picks up a back pass from the rebound. The referee awards an indirect freekick. Martin Chavez’s attempt at goal is thwarted by a wave of HFC defenders.
The pace of the game has died down a little. Rajasthan gaining a foothold in the game. Unfortunately for the I-League side, it hasn’t been able to generate anything concrete so far. HFC has a scary moment, a back pass almost gets stuck in the ground and Kattimani had to slide out of his box to swipe it away.
The rain has restarted and has regained its intensity. The quality of this pitch and its drainage facility is being put to test. RUFC wins a corner down the right. Chavez’s set piece delivery is immaculate as usual.
Rajasthan is pressing harder and higher as it tries to win the ball in attacking territories. Martin Chavez gets RUFC’s first real shot of the game. But it is wide off the post. Despite the early goal, Rajasthan hasn’t gone into its shell.
Martin Chavez tries to drive through the HFC midfield. But Hitesh brings him down. Akash Mishra is the first to react to a resulting loose ball outside the box following the freeckick. His long ball creates chaos in the RUFC defense. Siverio’s cross had to be scrambled away by Vishal. RUFC survives that one.
Hyderabad hasn’t allowed RUFC any sort of breathing room. The attacking switch has been turned on right from the kickoff. It has also been aided by the conditions.
Heavy rain splashing onto the ground. This wet sloppy outfield could be a minefield for defenders and goalkeepers. OGBECHHEE!! And the Nigerian super eagle scores. Borja swings in it from the left and Ogbeche heads the low cross down into the turf and skids across the surface and past Vishal. HFC 1-0 RUFC
The last quarter final of the tournament kicks off at Kolkata. Hyderabad in the dark red kits. Rajasthan United in whites. The ISL champion would love an early strike to prevent knockout jitters. The Nizams wins an early corner. Borja to swing it in. Cleared at the first post.
Defending ISL champion, Hyderabad FC will be up against I-League side Rajasthan United in the last quarterfinal of Durand Cup at Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) in Kolkata on Monday.
The Manolo Marquez-managed side qualified for the knockout stage after topping Group C. Meanwhile, Rajathan United had to scrap through Group B in second place, where it overcame ATK Mohun Bagan and Emami East Bengal in the process.
In fact, the I-League side was unbeaten against both the Kolkata giants in its group and even beat ATK Mohun Bagan 3-2 in its opener.
Rajasthan United, despite the magnitude of its success in this tournament, will struggle against the reigning ISL champion, who has Bartholomew Ogbeche still firing up front.