Kerala Blasters and Northeast United shared points in an entertaining match
Kerala Blasters FC came into the match after a defeat in their opening match. While, Northeast United FC came into the match after a win against strong Mumbai City FC. Northeast United FC is a better team defensively and Kerala Blasters always look to play aggressive style of football. Kerala Blasters netted 2 goals in first half. Northeast United claw their way back into the game with 2 goals in second half to share points.
First Half : Kerala Blasters domination
Kerala Blasters FC scored the goal in 5th minute of the game. Seityasen Singh provided an assist with a beautiful curled in delivery inside the box from a set piece, on which Cidoncha's sliced header found the back of the net. Generally Northeast's defense is very solid but the Kerala Blasters scorer jumped higher then other players and placed it beautifully into the top left corner. No keeper could have saved this.
Ashutosh Mehta then found himself with a decent sight of goal on the half hour mark. The NorthEast defender, though, couldn’t keep his shot on target from a difficult angle to the relief of the Kerala players. Khassa Camara also tried his luck from outside the box a few minutes later but his shot was deflected behind for a corner.
Kerala Blasters won the penalty just before the half time break. Referee thought Rakesh Pradhaan made a foul on Lalthathanga Khawlhring, but the replays showed that there was no foul and referee was not in that position from which he can clearly see what actually happened. But as VAR is not in ISL, so the awarded penalty was converted into goal by the Kerala striker Hooper. At the half time Kerala Blasters leading Northeast United by 2 goals to none.
Second Half : Northeast United FC's character
Northeast United know that they will have to attack to stand a chance in this match. In the second half, it is all about Northeast's attack and Kerala's defence. A corner for Highlanders found unmarked Appiah inside the box whose reflexes found the back of the net in 51st minute.
Northeast United won the penalty in the 66th minute but the striker Appiah went for power instead of placement and hit the crossbar. This was the golden opportunity for the highlanders to draw levels but it went missing.
Northeast United kept the pressure on the Kerala's defense which eventually fall apart in the 90th minute to hand Northeast their second goal of the match. A long ball from their own half found the only striker Sylla just outside the 30 yard box whose first touch took the ball away from the defender costa and the strike from left foot of the striker found the netting.