Pune City 2-4 Chennaiyin FC
KICK-OFF: Nov 6, 7.30PM (IST) (GMT +5.30)
Channel: Star Sports HD1, Star Sports 1, Star Sports 3.
Streaming: Hotstar, Jio TV.
Highlights: Click Here
Venue: Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Pune.
9th and 10th placed teams FC Pune City and Chennaiyin go head to head in Pune in a battle to avoid the ignominy of being the last-placed team. Defending champions Chennaiyin will find out after today’s game if there is any chance of them salvaging their season. If Chennai are not able to beat Pune City who have been abysmal, the writing on the wall will probably say ‘No play-offs this season.”
-Chennaiyin go into this game on the back of two defeats against Mumbai City and ATK. They looked toothless against Mumbai City with none of the players stepping up to mount an offense after going down in the 20th minute. The players looked demotivated and out of ideas.
In a must-win game such as this, Chennai could probably deploy both Jeje and Palestinian forward Carlos Salom up front (Going by the made-up adage, “Two out-of-form strikers are better than one out-of-form striker.”) At the back, Calderon, Sabia and Mailson really need to pull their socks up this game – their defending this entire season has been subpar.
The head-to-head record between the two teams shows that Pune City have never beaten Chennaiyin in the Indian Super League.
If Chennaiyin can replicate some part of last year’s form, especially in defence and set pieces, they could eke out a win. With the talent Chennaiyin possess, the only way after reaching rock bottom is up.
-FC Pune City come into this game after a creditable performance against Kerala in which they managed a draw. They had a chance to win the game, but for a missed penalty by Emiliano Alfaro. Their defence and midfield, especially Adil Khan kept the Kerala attack at bay. Kerala had 29 shots and 66 percent possession in this game.
If the defence is resolute as evidenced in their last game, Pune City will need their South American forwards Alfaro and Marcelinho to replicate some of their form from last season.
In Pune City team news, interim coach Pradhyum Reddy will be without Brazilian winger Diego Carlos who is suspended for two games.
Both teams are yet to win a game and have the worst defensive record this season having let in 11 goals apiece. Three points will be a godsend to either team whereas a draw will leave the teams as they were in the league table.
FULL-TIME: Pune City 2-4 Chennaiyin FC
94′ – RED CARD (Marcelinho, Pune City)
90′ – GOAL! 2-4 (Jonathan Vila, Header, Assist: Marcelinho, Pune City)
86′ – SUB (Chennaiyin: Renthlei L [IN] Inigo Calderon [OUT])
78′ – SUB (Pune City: Jakob V [IN] L. Fanai [OUT])
72′ – GOAL! 1-4 (Thoi Singh, Chennaiyin)
69′ – GOAL! 1-3 (Inigo Calderon, Chennaiyin)
67′ – SUB (Pune City: E. Alfaro [IN] Ashique Kuruniyan [OUT])
58′ – SUB (Pune City: Nikhil Poojari [IN] Robin Singh [OUT])
56′ – GOAL! 1-2 (Gregory Nelson, Assist: Mailson, Chennaiyin)
55′ – SUB (Chennaiyin: Thoi Singh [IN] Francis Fernandes [OUT])
54′ – GOAL! 1-1 (Mailson, Header, Assist: Anirudh Thapa, Chennaiyin)
49′ – YELLOW CARD (Robin Singh, Pune City)
23′ – YELLOW CARD (L. Fanai, Pune City)
16′ – YELLOW CARD (Mailson, Chennaiyin)
9′ – GOAL! 1-0 (Ashique Kuruniyan, Assist: Robin Singh, Pune City)
Chennaiyin FC registered the first win of their season with a thumping 4-1 victory over Pune City. With four goals scored in this game, they leapfrogged Delhi Dynamos on goal difference and now sit eighth on the table.
Pune took the lead in the 9th minute when Robin Singh sent a fantastic defence-splitting diagonal ball across the field into the path of Ashique Kuruniyan on the left flank who slotted it between the legs of the keeper. Pune City maintained their narrow lead going into half-time.
The Chennai equalizer came in the 54th minute. Anirudh Thapa won a free kick 30 yards out from goal and chipped the ball into Mailson who headed the ball in. The Chennaiyin captain Mailson was in tears after scoring the goal. He was one of the players blamed for Chennai’s poor performances this season and was not part of the starting 11 for the last three games. The goal did look slightly offside, but it was an extremely tight call to make for the referee.
Chennaiyin took the lead a couple of minutes later with Mailson again in the thick of it. From deep down in the Chennai half, he made a 70 yard lofted pass which found Gregory Nelson cutting in from the right flank. The keeper was poorly positioned near the goal and took too much time to get forward and intercept the pass. Nelson met the ball just at the right moment and clipped the ball over the keeper and into the goal. 2-1 to Chennai!
Chennai dominated possession and had quite a few attempts on goal in the second half. A third goal resulted from a corner which was not cleared and the ball fell into Calderon at the far post who semi-acrobatically (he looked like he was falling over) put the ball into the net.
For the fourth Chennaiyin, Jeje took a shot on goal. The keeper pawed it back into the path of Thoi Singh who put the game beyond the reach of Pune City. The veteran midfielder has scored three goals this season and has the knack of being at the right place at the right time. Pune got a consolation goal in the 90th minute with Jonathan Vila scoring a header off a Marcelinho corner.
Marcelinho made a horrible double-footed tackle in the 94th minute on Chennaiyin midfielder Germanpreet Singh who had to be stretchered off. A red card followed and a lengthy suspension might be in the offing. With Diego Carlos also suspended for dangerous play, Pune City have dug themselves into a bit of hole with their lack of discipline. They take on ATK at the Salt Lake stadium on Nov. 10 and without the two attacking players, their winless streak could very well continue.
Chennaiyin managed to claw themselves back into this game after being a goal down at half-time. Their set-piece game seems on point and the midfielders Raphael Augusto, Anirudh Thapa and Gregory Nelson have impressed. The play Jamshedpur next at ‘The Furnace’ after the international break on Nov. 25.