THE REWIND: JFC vs KBFC
When JAMSHEDPUR FC opted to go for a 4-1-4-1 formation, Coach Ivan Vukomanović opted to field Blasters unit under his effective 4-4-2 formation. With Ivan Kalyuzhnyi and Jeakson Singh taking care of the central midfield area, Sahal Abdul Samad and Rahul KP ware in-charge of the wing attacks. Captain Adrian Luna joined Dimitrios Diamantakos in finisher role.
‘THE MEN OF STEEL’, who were coming after losing 4 continuous matches made there statement loud and clear on the 4th touch on ball. A long ball cross from Jay Emmanuel-Thomas to the right flank of blasters penalty box within the first few seconds to the game made it clear that Jamshedpur Fc is desperate to get the 3 points. 2 minute in to the game, another long ball from Laldinliana Renthlei went ineffective as there were no JFC players to receive the ball. On the other side, Kerala Blasters played a composed and calculated game as they were tightly marshalled by Jamshedpur Fc on ever moves. A header attempt for Blasters by Sahal Abdul Samad on a cross from Ivan Kalyuzhnyi in the 4th minute was not powerful enough to test TP Rehenesh. A brilliant trough ball to the Jamshedpur Fc penalty box by Adrian Luna in the 5th minute could have caused trouble for the hosts if any of the Blasters strikers could be there to receive the ball. A shot from Ivan Kalyuzhnyi on cross from Luna in the 6th minute also went away from the post.
A clearance error in the Blasters half on the 9th minute resulted in Ritwik Das charging through the left wing and delivering a brilliant cross to the Blasters penalty box. But, a calm and confident Prabhsukhan Singh Gill was there to collect the ball to clear any danger. When attack swinged to the other direction, TP Rehenesh collected the ball safely when Rahul KP could not reach a cross from Marko Lešković. But, ‘MEN IN YELLOW’ was not that far from scoring. A freekick from Adrian Luna in the 17th minute was guided to the target by Dimitrios Diamantakos. With this goal Dimitrios Diamantakos matched the goal tally with Ivan Kalyuzhnyi as the leading goal scorer for Kerala Blaster in ISL season 9 scoring in the 4th match in a row.
An attempt from Sahal Abdul Samad in the 20th minute was denied by Jamshedpur custodian TP Rehenesh. Another attempt from Sahal in the 35th minute went away from the post. Jamshedpur Fc also had their fair share of attempts on goal. A shot on target from Ritwik Das in the 37th minute was denied by Prabhsukhan Singh Gill with a stunning save. Another shot on target for JFC from Boris Singh was comfortably collected by Blasters custodian in the 46th minute of the game ensuring that the score board remained in favour of Kerala Blasters when both teams walked out for the Half time.
With Kerala Blasters orchestrating the attack from midfield and Jamshedpur Fc closely defending each movement from the visitors, Ivan Kalyuzhnyi tried a long-range attempt in the 50th minute but missed the target marginally. Jamshedpur Fc shifted to ‘attacking mode’ in second half by introducing Ishan Pandita and Jitendra Singh on the 56th minute. 60th minute saw Ishan Pandita missing a clear chance with only Prabhsukhan Singh Gill between him and the target. Blasters also had our share of bad luck on the 66th minute when Rahul KP was unfortunate to miss the target on a pinpoint pass from Sandeep Singh into the penalty box. A header attempt in the 69th minute from Ishan Pandita and another one on by Daniel Chima Chukwu in the same minute narrowly missing the target got ‘The Red Miners’ close to scoring. Ishan Pandita again created trouble for the blasters defence again and brought down by Sandeep Singh inches away from the penalty box in the 72nd minute.
With a thin cushion of a 1 goal lead and feeling the heat at the ‘Furnace’ from the continuous attack from hosts, Blasters brought in Apostolos Giannou and Jessel Carneiro in the 76th minute replacing Dimitrios Diamantakos and Nishu Kumar respectively. Ishan Pandita knocked on the blasters goal line again in the 84th minute only to miss the target marginally. Blasters also introduced Saurav Mandal replacing Sahal Abdul Samad on the 85th minute and Adrian Luna was replaced by Víctor Mongil on the 94th minute to ensure that the hosts are kept away from scoring. And this ensured that Kerala Blasters walked away with the important 3 points in arow for the fourth time and also a clean sheet.