Chennaiyin FC's defensive sloppiness came back to hurt it for the umpteenth time this Indian Super League season. Two goals in under a minute from Marcelinho gave FC Pune City a come-from-behind win at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai on Saturday.
Phil Brown spoke in the pre-match conference about wanting to ensure Pune's playoffs progression while playing a good style of football and the Stallions started on the front foot with quick passes.
The first chance came 22 seconds after kickoff when Robin Singh was found with a lob over Chennaiyin's defence but he fluffed his lines with only the goalkeeper to beat. A minute later, Iain Hume was almost through on goal when the Chennaiyin defence was caught napping again.
The visitor's forward line was too fluent for the home team's defence. Quick passes and constant interchange of positions meant Chennaiyin's defenders were regularly caught out of position.
The Blues' first shot on target came in the 22nd minute when Raphael Augusto was found with a through ball but his shot was easily saved by Kamaljit Singh. The only other notable chance for the home side was when Gregory Nelson's shot went inches wide in the 30th minute.
Pune finished the half as it started, dominating the ball and controlling the pace of the game.
Six minutes after the restart, Chennaiyin took the lead through C.K. Vineeth. Anirudh Thapa's shot at the edge of the box deflected into the Kannur forward's path and he shot across the goal to open his account for the club.
The lead, however, lasted only two minutes. Marko Stankovic got past a half-hearted challenge and cut it back to Marcelinho, who found the equaliser with a first-time finish.
A minute later Pune took the lead when Ashique Kuruniyan found Marcelinho with his weaker right foot down the left channel. With no defender tracking his run, he went across Karanjit Singh's goal to get his second of the game.
Chennaiyin dominated the possession and the chances after going behind but Pune defended much better than its counterpart to wrap up its third consecutive win and the fourth of the season.
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