Dominant NorthEast performance holds high flying Delhi Dynamos to a 0-0 draw.
Flaunting Alessandro del Piero, the Delhi Dynamos contingent lined up in a 4-3-3, led by the Italian. Steven Dias, who had a brilliant game against Chennaiyin FC operated on the right wing, while a start still eluded the mesmerizing Gustavo Marmentini.
Probably the shock of this fixture was NorthEast United’s Koke and marquee player Joan Capdevila, not making the starting lineup, as both sustained light knocks in their previous encounters.
NorthEast United started with a 4-1-4-1, as crowd favorite Durga Boro, lead the Highlanders, while Miguel Garcia slotted in for an injured Joan Capdevila.
Attacking from the first minute itself, Ricki Herbert’s side justified the coach intent to deliver good football. The ball being constantly played deep into Delhi’s half, reflected the clear intent of The Highlanders. A Durga Boro shot soon followed, which was miles off its target.
With Tomas Josl and Robin Gurung constantly exploiting space on the left flank, left vacated by Steven Dias, Delhi Dynamos reverted to counter attack tactics, and a del Piero shot soon threatened to disarm the Highlander’s attack.
Reverting to a 4-3-1-2, with Arias playing in the hole and Adil Khan slotting in as Right back, Delhi constantly seemed to earn something new from this tactical change, whilst testing NorthEast United’s keeper Rehnesh.
Adopting a 4-3-3, which improvised to a 3-4-3 attackingly, NorthEast United constantly created pressure, and found spaces to exploit the Dynamos defense. Durga Boro dropped deep and looked end his barren run of goals, as he constantly tested the tall figure of Kristof van Hout with his long shots.
Continuing with their attack minded approach NorthEast United ticked regularly towards goal, as a goal still eluded both the contingents. A Durga Boro deflected shot which tested the wits of van Hout, was the closest the Highlanders could amount to in the opening minutes of the second half.
Delhi Dynamos soon changed their formation and deployed a 4-3-3, which operated with Shylo playing wide on the left flank. A Mads Junker backheel spectacular following an Alessandro del Piero cross, hit the crossbar, as this new tactical innovation, benefited the Dynamos.
With Delhi playing an high line, Super Sub Gustavo dos Santos replaced del Piero, as the side looked to find the elusive goal. Dos Santos’s inclusion was soon capitalized, as the Dynamos often looked to him for ideas, in the final third.
Although, NorthEast United dominated proceeding and were robbed of a penalty, a rare Dynamo counter attack, which threatened the Highlanders amounted to a miscued shot, way off target by dos Santos.
In their quest to find the elusive goal, both sides reverted to crosses and long balls, as the game approached time. Hans Mulder’s shot was saved brilliantly by Rehenesh, as the hosts looked to steal all three points.
However the elusive goal still evaded both the contingents, as the game finished with neither of the two teams opening their goal scoring accounts.
A point for Delhi takes them to fourth, while NorthEast United hold to their third spot.