Vasco, Goa, 20 February: Mumbai City’s chances of finishing at the top of the Hero Indian Super League received a huge blow as they suffered a 0-2 defeat against Jamshedpur at Tilak Maidan, Vasco, on Saturday.
Goals from substitutes Boris Singh (72’) and David Grande (90′) helped Jamshedpur inflict a second-straight defeat upon the Islanders, who are undergoing their worst phase in the league so far.
This result meant a win for Mohun Bagan against Hyderabad on Monday would ensure them of the League Winners Shield and a maiden AFC Champions League spot.
It was a rather ordinary first 45 minutes with very little action throughout. Jamshedpur were the dominant side nullifying Mumbai’s usual free-flowing football. Owen Coyle’s men played a high-pressing game thus disrupting Mumbai City’s moves.
Jamshedpur seemed to have done their homework right, as the Islanders found it difficult to play from the back as they usually do. They had just one shot in the first session, that too off target.
Though both sides didn’t have clear-cut chances, Mumbai’s Amrinder Singh was comparatively busier than JFC’s TP Rehenesh. Amrinder was called into action as early as the 5th minute when Isaac Vanmalsawma lashed in a cross from the left flank into the box for Nerijus Valskis. But his header was met by Amrinder’s palm.
Jamshedpur kept knocking the Mumbai goal throughout but weren’t getting the final touch. Seiminlen Doungel and Farukh Choudhary had their moments but again they couldn’t keep their attempt on target.
Valskis missed a chance to put his side ahead when he was played in by Isaac. However, the Lithuanian headed way over.
Nothing changed in the second session as Jamshedpur continued their attack on the Mumbai goal. Isaac sent a cross to Choudhary, who showed great technique in controlling the ball before getting past his marker, only to see his attempt saved by Amrinder.
It was no surprise when Jamshedpur got the ball in the back of the net in the 72nd minute. Aitor Monroy hit a low delivery at the near post and Choudhary got ahead of Ahmed Jahouh and flicked it to the middle.
Mumbai had a chance to restore parity from a corner. Cy Goddard was able to find Mourtada Fall with his delivery by the last-named but fired his header wide.
Grande ensured full points for JFC with a fine finish. Isaac and Monroy combined in the middle of the park with little pressure before the Spaniard slipped the ball into the path of Grande, who stabbed it past Amrinder.
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