ISL: Odisha FC comes from behind to defeat NorthEast United, keeps top-four hopes alive

Odisha FC will need a win to keep its playoffs hopes alive when it hosts NorthEast United in the Indian Super League today.

Redeem Tlang

Odisha is sixth on the points table, whereas NorthEast United is ninth.   -  ISL MEDIA

Hello and welcome to the highlights of the match between Odisha FC and NorthEast United in the Indian Super League (ISL).

 

FULLTIME Odisha FC has come from behind to score to goals in the second half and keep its hopes of making it into the top-four alive.

90' + 4' Gallego playes for the freekick and wins it. Used his body well to win the decision. Gallego takes it and his ball into the box is punched out by the 'keeper, who goes to ground as soon as he hears the referee's whistle for a foul.

90' Four minutes have been at the end of this half.

89' Xizco and Vaz clash while trying to head a lnog ball and the former is on the ground holding his head. The home side wants the referee to give the NorthEast defender a second yellow but the official disagrees. Good call as replays shows that both had eyes on the ball.

86' Gimbau isn't happy with some of the decisions and he is too vocal for the referee's liking. And the Odisha coach gets a yellow card.

84' Onwu and Vaz come together and both pick up a yellow card. The latter will miss the next game as a result.

80' Keogh is replaced by Simon Lundevall.

77' Andrew Keogh gets to Ninthoi's cutback inside the box but his shot lacks power and is straight down Arshdeep's throat.

75' Nandhakumar Sekar is on a stretcher and he is off. Mohammad Dhot replaces him.

72' GOAL! Perez Guedes scores to complete Odisha's comeback! Xisco's corner is headed to the back post by Pnwu and Perez goes to ground while putting the ball in. Massive goal for Odisha!

68' Onwu almsot scored from Guedes' cross. The striker jumped high but couldn't get the power to head it past the 'keeper.

63' Gallego releases Chaves and Ninthoi can't control the low cross. Arshdeep puts his body on the ball before Ninthoi could control the ball.

62' First change for NorthEast. Jose Leudo is replaced by Ninthoi.

60' Jose Leudo fouls Daniel as the substitute lined up a shot just outside the box and Odisha wins a freekick in a good position. Tebar takes the freekick and his attempt flies well over.

60' Odisha has dominated the possession, and the chances, this half. That early goal has seen the momentum swing their way. Can they convert it into a goal?

56' There are two players in the box for Odisha and neither can get a touch on the ball to turn it in. It was a beautiful cross from Jerry and both Onwu and Daniel were inches away from making contact.

47' GOAL! ONWU GETS THE EQUALISER FOR ODISHA. Nandhakumar Sekar's cross from the left is turned in by the striker. That's his fourth goal in three games and the first player to score in three consecutive games for Odisha.

46' NorthEast gets the second half started. Gombau has made a double change at halftime. Vinit Rai has been replaced by Jerry and Daniel Lalhlimpuia has come on for Shubham Sarangi. Attacking changes from the coach.

Halftime NorthEast Unites takes a 1-0 lead going into the break. Martin Chaves scored midway through the half and Josep Gombau's side will need to come from behind and win the game to keep its hopes of a top-four finish alive.

45' + 2' Shubham Sarangi dances his way into he box, cuts in and shoots at Subhasish Roy. The 'keeper makes a good save and holds on to the ball as Onwu was luring for the rebound.

45' + 1' Onwu's run into the ball is stoppped by a trailing leg. There are a few calls for a penalty but the referee disagrees.

45' Two minutes has been added at the end of the first half.

40' Martin Chaves' low cross from the right is aimed at Milan Singh but the ball is a behind him. The midfielder flicks it towards Andrew Keogh, who miscues his shot.

And imemdaitely after, Chaves' speculative shot from distance is deflected out for a corner. Reagan Singh gets the ball from the short corner and his cross goes out for a goalkick. The corners in the game have been disappointing so far. They have either been blocked by the first man or sent too long.

37' And seconds later Rakesh Pradhan slides in to give away another freekick and goes into the book. XIsco's setpiece is easily defended.

37' Redeem Tlang slides in and takes the ball, and Xisco, with a sliding challenge. That was a silly challenge and is lucky to stay on the pitch as he is already on a yellow.

35' Yellow to Jose Leudo now. He brings down Onwu and stops a quick freekick from being taken.

31' Tactical foul from Vinit Rai to stop a counter and he picks up a yellow card.

30' Beautiful play from Odisha and that was almost an equaliser.  A cheeky backheel at the edge of the box puts Marcos Tebar one-on-one with the 'keeper. And Tebar shoots straight at the 'keeper! Either side of Subhasish and it could have been the equaliser.

 

28' That goal has brought the game to life as Odisha needs to score two goals to stay in the playoffs race.

24' GOAL! Martin Chaves gives NorthEast the lead! That's his first goal in the Indian Super League. He controls Gallego's long ball over the Odisha defence and slots it past the keeper. Shubham Sarangi did his best to put pressure on the winger but it wasn't enough.

That is also NorthEast's first away goal of the year!

18' On the counter from a NorthEast corner, Onwu finds Xisco on the right and the Spaniard's shot is parried out by Subhasish Roy. Good save that. That's the first shot on target today. Meanwhile, Redeem Tlang picks up a yellow card for arguing with the referee and that emans he will miss the next game.

 

15' Gallego takes the freekick and his cross into the box slips through Arshdeep Singh's grasp but Shubham Sarangi bails him out.

14' Tackles flying in now. The latest is by Vinit Rai on Gallego, who goes down under the referee's nose with a huge groan and wins a freekick.

10' Ten minutes gone and NorthEast has done well to not give Odisha players time on the ball when they are in the final third.

5' Andrew Keogh looks to take the ball off Carlos Delgado but he instead pushes him in the back and brings him down. Neither player is happy with the referee's decision.

3' Gaurav Bora makes a run down the middle and passes it to Xisco Hernandez, who lets it go for Martin Guedes. Guedes cuts in and takes a shot but it is wide of the post.

2' High press early on from the NorthEast and it is working. Odisha isn't able to settle down into the passing patterns that Gombau likes.

1' Odisha FC, playing in its all-white, gets the match underway. NorthEast FC on the other hand is in its all-red kit.

The teams are out and we are less than ten minutes away from kickoff. Can Odisha FC get all three points and stay in the playoffs race or will its season end at home? We'll find out soon.

— Update: Looks like Heerings Kai has picked up an injury in the warm up and he'll not be playing today. Rakesh Pradhan will replace him in the starting 11, which means the visiting side will have an all-Indian back four.

Almost an hour left for the game and we have something intertesting for you to watch till then. In our latest #OffThePitch episode, we caught up with Dhanpal Ganesh and Edwin Sydney Vanspaul who spoke about their first meeting back in grade 7, to I-League and Indian Super League titles, to Vadivelu jokes and a lot more!

 

— TEAM NEWS

Odisha FC: Arshdeep Singh (GK), Carlos Delgado, Narayan Das, Shubham Sarangi, Gaurav Bora, Marcos Tebar (C), Xisco Hernandez, Martin Guedes, Vinit Rai, Nandhakumar Sekar, Manuel Onwu

NorthEast United FC: Subhasish Roy (GK), Nim Dorjee, Heerings Kai, Reagan Singh, Wayne Vaz, Jose Leudo, Milan Singh, Redeem Tlang, Federico Gallego (C), Andrew Keogh, Martin Chaves

Following NorthEast United's 3-3 draw with Jamshedpur FC, the Guwahati-based club annoucned that it has parted ways with manager Robert Jarni. Khalid Jamil, announced as the interim head coach, will take charge of the team for the first time today.

Here's what Odisha FC coach Josep Gombau said ahead of the match: “For us, it is a very important two games. We have approached this season game by game. Only the last two matches are remaining. If mathematics says that we can do it, we need to fight for it. It will not depend on just us, but football is football. I said to my players that we have to be concentrated on our job. We need to train very well. It is a must-win game. After that, we will enter the last match with the same approach. We need to know what we need to do with the ball. We have prepared for the game like a final. Every game is crucial from here on.”

“We had a good discussion in our changing room. If you are a footballer, you need to live with this pressure and with this winning mentality. The sport is like this. At this moment, it is all or nothing. We need to deal with this. It is a must-win game. It is important for us that our people come to support us, as they have in every home match.

“When you play a team that changed their coach, there are some things that will change. The new coach will introduce his own style and philosophy. The second thing is that a lot of players want to show the new coach that they are good and that they want to be there. For sure when a new coach comes, it is an extra motivation for the players.”

Match preview

Odisha FC will look for an outright win when it plays host to NorthEast United FC in the Indian Super League here at the Kalinga Stadium on Friday.

The home side is currently sixth on the table and five points behind fourth-placed Mumbai City FC. If Odisha fails to beat NorthEast United, it will mathematically be out of contention for a top-four slot.

Josep Gombau's men come into the game on the back of three successive losses, with the most recent being a 3-1 defeat to ATK. The side now has two matches left to turnaround its campaign.

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“These are two important games. We have approached this season game by game. If mathematics says it is possible we are going to fight for it. We need to concentrate. We have been training very well. It is a must-win game. If we win tomorrow, we will approach the next game with the same attitude. We have prepared for the match as a final,” said Gombau.

Odisha will need the likes of Xisco Hernandez and Manuel Onwu to fire upfront. Onwu has been among the goals since he moved to Odisha and will look to continue his form against NorthEast as well. However, the side will need to shore up its defence, which has leaked in 10 goals in the last three matches.

NorthEast United, on the other hand, is winless in 11 matches and recently parted ways with head coach Robert Jarni after the 3-3 draw with Jamshedpur FC on Monday.

RELATED| ISL: Robert Jarni sacked as NorthEast United coach

Interim coach Khalid Jamil will face his first test and is keen on continuing Jarni's philosophy. “We have to give our best with everything that we have. We will continue in the way, Mr. Jarni was following. There will be minor changes, that's it,” said Jamil.

The visiting side has a few injury issues with the likes of Nikhil Kadam and Mislav Komorski ruled out while midfielder Lalengmawia is out because of personal reasons.

Though Irish marksman Andy Keogh is yet to find the back of the net, the likes of Federico Gallego and Redeem Tlang impressed against Jamshedpur and Jamil will hope they can maintain their form as the side bids to finish the season on a positive note.

Match details

Odisha vs NorthEast United will kick off at 7:30 PM IST and will be telecast live on the Star Sports network. It can also be streamed live on Hotstar.