Kerala Blasters played out a disappointing draw against NorthEast United. In an evenly contested tie, both teams rued opportunities missed infront of goal. Kerala Blasters came close to scoring a goal by hitting the woodwork. Although the match was a high tempo and exciting encounter, it lacked goals. With the spoils of battle shared, Kerala Blasters amount to sixteen points while NorthEast United amount to fourteen points. Kerala Blaster’s David James was adamant that his side were the better side, and should have won the tie.
““We should have won the game. Up until we stated really started pushing for a goal, North East United didn’t have many chances and were not a threat. We had a couple of chances from set plays and we also created a few other chances. Our goal keeper Sandip Nandy also made two important saves. Had we lost today, we would have been booking our flights home now,” James remarked
“You’re up against one of the best defences in the Hero Indian Super League in the form of North East United, and playing with 10 players doesn’t change their mindset because they are a very organised team,”
“I am just frustrated that we couldn’t take the opportunities that we created, especially from set plays. We had a more aggressive line-up and formation in the form of a midfield diamond, we also made more attacking substitutions. We literally threw the kitchen sink at them, created chances, but unfortunately, we couldn’t score the goal that was needed to win the game, as goals make a difference,” he added.
Kerala Blasters although dominated the game, dropped two points due to missed chance. NorthEast United were also equally combatant in this fixture as the Highlanders continously tested Kerala’s defense. There were some massive changes made within the Kerala Starting XI, Sandesh Jhigan was excluded from the side and was replaced by Nirmal Chhetri. Both Penn Orji and Mehtab Hossain, came back into the squad. Although Kerala’s hope for the top four are still intact, NorthEast United’s run in the Super League might have just come to an end.