ISL 2019-20: Chennaiyin does the double over Blasters, Ogbeche hat-trick in vain

Blasters' Bartholomew Ogbeche scored the season's first hat-trick, but in vain as Chennaiyin FC ended any chance of the Blasters making it to the playoffs with a 6-3 win.

Valskis, Crivellaro and Chhangte all scored a brace in Chennaiyin's rout of Blasters.   -  ISL/SPORTZPICS

There was a flood of goals, nine in all, including a hat-trick by Kerala Blasters captain Bartholomew Ogbeche, at the Nehru Stadium here on Saturday night but it was two-time champion Chennaiyin FC which walked away a 6-3 winner in the Indian Super League game.

The handsome victory helped the visitor climb a rung in the league ladder, to fifth, and move closer to the semifinal spot.

As it happened: ISL Kerala Blasters 3-6 Chennaiyin FC, highlights: a hat-trick, three braces mark nine-goal tie

The game was everything that Chennaiyin coach Owen Coyle had predicted. But it was Chennaiyin midfielder Rafael Crivellaro who was the star of the show with his brilliant play in the last few minutes of the first half that fetched the visitor three goals. The Brazilian's brace and an assist put the Blasters to the sword at half-time.

Chennaiyin's opening goal, in the 39th minute, was virtually a gift from the Blasters goalkeeper T.P. Rehenesh. Soon after receiving a backpass, Rehenesh tapped the ball directly to Crivellaro, the most dangerous man on the night. The latter was quick to grab the opportunity, placing the ball into the net with only the 'keeper to beat. The error proved costly for Rehenesh and it appeared to play on his mind for the rest of the game.

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Rafael Crivellaro starred for Chennaiyin FC with two goals and an assist against Kerala Blasters.   -  H. Vibhu

 

Five minutes later, Crivellaro was at it again, swiftly passing the ball to Lithuanian Nerijus Valskis – the ISL's top scorer this season – even as he was brought down by the central defenders. Valskis produced a bullet of a shot that gave Rehenesh no chance, ultimately finishing the game with two goals. Lallianzuala Chhangte had two goals of his own to celebrate too.

The second half saw six goals as Ogbeche led the Blasters retaliation almost singlehandedly. The Nigerian scored three in the space of 28 second half minutes – the first after a soft slide, the second with a fiery shot and with a bullet header for the third - but with Crivellaro doing all the damage in the first half, the home captain could only walk away disappointed at the end of the evening.
 

The result: Kerala Blasters 3 (Bartholomew Ogbeche 48, 65 & 76) lost to Chennaiyin FC 6 (Rafael Crivellaro 39 & 45+1, Nerijus Valskis 45 & 90, Lallianzuala Chhangte 59 & 80).

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