Kerala Blasters FC registered an enthralling win over Hyderabad FC in the last game of the first phase of ISL 8 and have now moved to the top position in the league table. Alvaro Vazquez’s goal in the late first half was the only difference in the match.
After a 2-2 draw against FC Goa, coach Vukomanovic made only one change as Ruivah Hormipam returned to the first eleven. The game started off with Hyderabad’s touch and it was almost an equal game. Edu Garcia possessed a threat to our goal from his set-pieces but the defense did well to keep the score at the level.
Blasters tried to attack through quick overhead passes and transitions and looked lethal when entering their box. Jorge Diaz very nearly opened the scoring from an Adrian Luna cross with his header, but Laxmikant Kattimani made a save from close range.
The only goal of the match came from a long throw taken by Khabra. Sahal flicked the ball to the back and after getting deflected off from a Hyderabad player it fell at the right position for Vazquez. He produced a thunderous volley and put Blasters in front.
In the second half it was Hyderabad who created more chances but our defense was very watchful to earn a clean sheet. The skipper Jessel did a goal-line clearance towards the end to save the game for us, but he was taken off from the field after picking up an injury. Vazquez almost scored his second of the night from a free-kick after a lousy effort to save the ball by Kattimani. The referee blew the final whistle after almost 10 minutes of additional time and the game of evenness ended in favor of us.
With this huge win over the Nizams, we have climbed to the top of the table with 17 points from 10 games and have extended our unbeaten streak to 9 matches. We would like to keep up with this momentum and continue to conquer more heights with confidence and hard work. Kerala Blasters will square off against Odisha FC in 3 days, on 12th January 2022.
KBFC XI:-Prabhsukhan Singh Gill(GK), Harmanjot Singh Khabra, Ruivah Hormipam, Marko Leskovic, Jessel Allen Carneiro(C), Jeakson Singh Thounaojam, Lalthathanga Khawlhring, Adrian Luna, Sahal Abdul Samad, Alvaro Vazquez, Jorge Pereyra Diaz.
Subs:- Karanjit Singh(GK), Nishu Kumar, Sandeep Singh Soraisam, Sanjeev Stalin, Bijoy V, Enes Sipovic, Ayush Adhikari, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Chencho Gyeltshen.
HFC XI:- Laxmikant Kattimani(GK), Ashish Rai, Chinglensana Singh, Juanan, Akash Mishra, Jao Victor Bruno(C), Hitesh Sharma, Aniket Jadhav, Edu Garcia, Nikhil Poojary, Bartholomew Ogbeche.
Subs:- Gurmeet Singh(GK), Mohammed Yasir, Sahil Tavora, Seityasen Singh, Souvik Chakraborty, Rohit Danu, Nim Dorjee Tamang, Pritam Kumar Singh, Javier Siverio Toro.