ISL: FC Goa seals play-off berth with win over Kerala

Quickfire goals in the first half from Ferran Corominas (22’) and Edu Bedia (25') and a third by Hugo Boumous (78') sealed a comfortable 3-0 win for FC Goa.

FC Goa toppled Bengaluru FC from the first place in the ISL table.   -  ISL Media

FC Goa became the second Hero Indian Super League (ISL) side to book its place in the play-offs after a convincing 3-0 win over Kerala Blasters FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Goa on Monday evening.

Quickfire goals in the first half from Ferran Corominas (22’) and Edu Bedia (25') and a third by Hugo Boumous (78') helped the host do the double over the Kerala outfit in the season.

To make the result all the more sweeter, the Gaurs have leapfrogged Bengaluru FC to go top of the table. Goa has 31 points from 16 games same as Bengaluru FC but with a better goal difference now occupies table top position. On other hand, Kerala Blasters, remains ninth after slumping to its seventh loss of the season. 

FC Goa begun the match brightly as Jackichand Singh's effort came off the woodwork, much to Kerala’s relief.

Kerala then found the back of the net through Slavisa Stojanovic after a quick interplay with Matej Poplatnik. However, the linesman had his flag raised after Courage Pekuson was deemed to be in an offside position.

Read: As it happened

Goa got a deserved breakthrough in the 22nd minute through Ferran Corominas. Brandon Fernandes’ cross from the left was headed home with ease by the Spaniard after he was afforded a lot of space inside the box by Anas Edathodika and Sandesh Jhingan.

Hugo Boumous of FC Goa celebrates the team's 3rd goal in the 78th minute.   -  ISL Media

 

In the 25th minute, Edu Bedia doubled the lead by slotting the ball into an empty net. This was after Anas sent a back-pass to Dheeraj whose clearance was straight at Corominas. The Spaniard took a touch and laid the ball on a platter for Bedia who applied the finishing touch.

The first chance in the second half fell to Kerala when Sahal Samad let loose from outside the box which finally forced a save from Goa custodian Naveen Kumar. But that was about it for Kerala, with Goa exerting control.

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Before the hour mark, Ahmed Jahouh sent a brilliant ball over the top for Corominas who made a bustling run and managed to get beyond Anas and Dheeraj only for a last-ditch tackle from Poplatnik to avert the danger.

Goa sealed the victory in the 78th minute when the substitute Hugo Boumous dribbled past a couple of players and evaded the challenge from Jhingan to beat Dheeraj at his near post to make it 3-0.

There were late chances for Goa to increase its tally with Bedia seeing a wonderful lob over Dheeraj Singh come back off the post. However, Serio Lobera would not have been disappointed, his team having notched its fifth cleansheet in a row.