ISL 2020-21: Top-five goals of the season

ISL 2021: From Bright Enobakhare's solo effort against FC Goa to Lalengmawia's wondergoal against Kerala Blasters, here are the top five goals of the season.

Anirudh Thapa

Anirudh Thapa struck his first goal of the season in 52 seconds.   -  Sportzpics/ISL

After 115 matches and 113 days of footballing action, the 2020-21 Indian Super League (ISL) finally came to an end in Margao on Saturday, with Mumbai City FC beating ATK Mohun Bagan 2-1 in the final at the Fatorda Stadium.

MCFC had also won the ISL League Winners’ Shield this year after topping the points table. The latest edition of India’s premier football tournament has witnessed 298 goals across three stadiums – Fatorda, GMC and Tilak Maidan – in Goa.

Here are the top five goals of the season:

1) BRIGHT ENOBAKHARE (SC EAST BENGAL VS FC GOA, JANUARY 6)

 

This goal is without a doubt the goal of the season, if not one of the contenders for the greatest ever in ISL’s short history. Despite FC Goa bagging the equaliser just a minute later, SC East Bengal striker Bright Enobakhare stole the plaudits on the night. He received the ball from Jacques Maghoma in midfield, dribbled past Princeton Rebello first, evaded an Aiban Dohling tackle next and got into the box. He dribbled past Ivan Gonzalez and Saviour Gama close to goal and slotted the ball home to give SCEB the lead in the 80th minute. The match, however, ended 1-1.

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2) RAFAEL CRIVELLARO (CHENNAIYIN FC VS FC GOA, DECEMBER 19)

 

Chennaiyin FC’s 2020-21 campaign derailed after its skipper Rafael Crivellaro suffered a ligament injury on his left ankle, which ruled him out of the tournament. Before his departure, Crivellaro had scored a wonder goal during his side’s 2-1 victory over FC Goa. When taking a corner, the CFC attacking midfielder curled the ball over a cluster of players in the middle to directly find the back of the net at the far post in the fifth minute. Goa goalkeeper Mohammad Nawaz was stunned by the effort. Despite Jorge Ortiz equalising for the Gaurs, a Rahim Ali goal in the second half got Chennai the win.

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3) GARY HOOPER (KERALA BLASTERS FC VS ATK MOHUN BAGAN, JANUARY 31)

 

Kerala Blasters FC was a team known to throw away leads this season. Against ATK Mohun Bagan in the reverse fixture, it was another similar story for the Tuskers. However, the game was a memorable one for Gary Hooper, who gave KBFC the lead with a delightful strike. In the 14th minute, Sandeep Singh delivered the ball across to the left-wing. Hooper chested it down and smashed it past ATKMB goalkeeper Arindam Bhattacharja, who dived to his left to stop the shot but stood no chance. The Mariners eventually came back from two goals down to seal a 3-2 win.

4) LALENGMAWIA (NORTHEAST UNITED FC VS KERALA BLASTERS FC, FEBRUARY 26)

 

NorthEast United FC defeated Kerala Blasters FC 2-0 in its final league game at the Tilak Maidan Stadium in Vasco da Gama. Suhair V. P. had given the Highlanders the lead during the first half. In the 45th minute, Luis Machado supplied a cross from the right, but it was too heavy. However, Dylan Fox kept it alive and played the ball to 'Emerging Player of the Year' award winner Lalengmawia in midfield, who got past his marker and unleashed a rocket that sneaked past the right hand of Albino Gomes at the near post. The ball rippled the net after hitting the underside of the crossbar to double NEUFC’s advantage.

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5) ANIRUDH THAPA (CHENNAIYIN FC VS JAMSHEDPUR FC, NOVEMBER 24)

 

Anirudh Thapa scored the fourth-fastest goal in the ISL’s seven-year history, at just 52 seconds, during Chennaiyin FC’s opening match of the season. The Marina Machans beat Jamshedpur FC 2-1 back then, and the Indian midfielder had opened the scoring. Captain Rafael Crivellaro got the ball and slipped a pass to the right flank where Esmael Goncalves was making a brilliant run forward. Esmael, who scored the other CFC goal on the night, received the ball and drilled a low cross towards the middle, where Anirudh Thapa made a bursting run and hammered the ball into the goal.