Keeping with the theme of the quarterfinal matches of the Super Cup so far, FC Goa and Jamshedpur FC served up another thrilling encounter in which the former prevailed 4-3 to progress into the semifinals.
Goa had raced to a three-goal lead with just over 25 minutes to go when Jamshedpur looked set to pull a fast one on the Indian Super League finalist. Sergio Lobera’s men, after two failed attempts in the ISL league stages, got one over Cesar Ferrando’s Jamshedpur at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on Saturday.
RELATED| Goa vs Jamshedpur - As it happened
Nearly all of Goa’s openings in the first half came off mistakes from Jamshedpur’s backline. A first start for 20-year-old goalkeeper Rafique Ali Sardar ahead of the experienced Subrata Paul set Jamshedpur off to a nervy start. Tasked with playing out from the back, a couple of poor backpasses nearly cost Jamshedpur the opening goal, but he made amends by diving low to make saves from snap shots.
Goa scored its first goal off a foul on the left wing in the 21st minute. Brandon Fernandes’ cross into the box only needed a touch on it to put off the onrushing ‘keeper Ali Sardar and Edu Bedia obliged with the slightest of touches to steer the ball into the net.
Pablo Morgado, playing as a false number nine, carved out a great opportunity for Jamshedpur to pull the scores level six minutes later. The Spaniard intercepted the ball in the center circle and slipped in a through ball behind the center-back Carlos Pena. Jerry cut inside Pena from the right to win the race for the ball and with only Mohammad Nawaz to beat from 12 yards, he struck it at a comfortable height for the ‘keeper to punch away for a corner.
If Nawaz was a calming influence between the posts, Ali Sardar was a nervous presence at the opposite end for Jamshedpur. He spilt a Brandon shot onto the crossbar which luckily for him didn’t land anywhere near a Goan attacker.
Brandon, who was a livewire on the left wing throughout the half, got his second assist at the stroke of half time. From a near identical position from where Goa scored the first, he zipped in a cross along the ground which was deflected in by Morgado.
Jamshedpur made two changes at the start of the second half by taking off Jerry and defender Karan Amin for Mohammad Mobashir and Robin Gurung.
Goa came close to adding its third of the match when Jackichand Singh, coming in from the right, found the side-netting from the six-yard area.
While it was uncharacteristic of Goa to score from set-pieces, there was nothing unusual about its third. A 10-pass move from the defence culminated in Zaid releasing right-back Seriton Fernandes, who blasted it into the left bottom-corner for his first goal in a Goa shirt.
The goal sparked a spurt of goals, four in the space of 18 minutes, with Jamshedpur finding a way back into the contest. The Men of Steel pulled one back after Carlos Calvo intercepted a pass from Nawaz before squaring the ball from the left wing for an unmarked Morgado to tap in.
Corominas got his customary goal when Bedia’s shot from distance struck Pratik Chowdhry's hand in the box and led to a penalty. The ISL top-scorer sent the ‘keeper the wrong way to make it 4-2 for Goa.
Jamshedpur then went on to strike twice, first through a Sergio Cidoncha header, who made a late run into the box to meet Calvo's cross from the left. Referee Rahul Gupta then made an error in judgment when he pointed to the spot before sending off Bedia for a second yellow in the last 10 minutes. Calvo got his goal from 12-yards out.
Jamshedpur, however, failed to take advantage of the extra man advantage as Goa hung on to claim a thrilling win.
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