Second day of the Hero Indian Super League saw Zicoa s FC Goa and Roberto Carlosa Delhi Dynamos – face each other, with FC Goa emerging on top.
FC Goa began the match in electric pace, as their 4-2-3-1 formation ripped apart Delhia s 5-3-2 formation with Zicoa s men targeting Delhia s makeshift wingbacks. Zico played with a direct approach and found immediate success.
FC Goaa s wingers Romeo Fernandes and Mandar Rao Dessai, known for their pace, played an important part for FC Goaa s first goal. A long ball over the top found Romeo, who beat Adinga and Riise, to lay it off across the goal. The makeshift wingback, Souvik Chakraborty, were unlucky to put it in his net, as Mandar pressured him into making the mistake.
The early goal forced Delhi Dynamos to venture out, which allowed FC Goa to play their tactics to the brink. FC Goa were happy to play on the counter, with Jofre controlling the proceedings from the midfield. FC Goa allowed Delhi to dominate the possession in the first half with Jofre pinging long balls for the wingers to chase down.
Rain poured during the game, meant the conditions werena t favourable for a passing approach, despite Delhia s attempts to play it on the ground. FC Goa defended with two lines of four and left no space in front of the box, forcing Delhi only to long shots.
The Gaurs had a few chances to kill the game with Romeo Fernandes the culprit on the first occasion, as he failed to connect with the ball on the 12th minute. Reinaldo felt short by few yards despite his diving attempt for a header on 24th minute from Jofre’s ball across the goal.
The goalkeepers on both sides performed well as they helped their team keep a respectable score line. Delhi Dynamosa s goalkeeper Sanjiban Ghosh, signed on emergency loan after all 3 goalkeepers were injured during the training, deserves a special mention as he played admirably and kept out the FC Goa players on a number of occasion.
It took as long as the 43rd minute for the Delhi Dynamos to create a real threat to the Goa goal, when Florent Maloudaa s corner found John Arne Riise, who nodded it towards the unaware Chicao. Lucio was the first to react and as was able to clear the ball. FC Goa struck a devastating morale blow to Delhi Dynamo, when the they scored just around the half time mark. A long ball found Jofre, who made the most from a foul on him to earn a freekick in favour of the Gaurs. Jofre took the resulting freekick with pace and Reinaldo toe-poked it towards the goal.
Zicoa s men started the second half with a completely different tactic. Gaurs tried to keep hold of the ball as long as possible, while Roberto Carlos took to the field for the Dynamos alongside Gustavo Dos Santos. Hans Mulder and Vinicius were sacrificed to adopt the two incoming players. Goa tried to slow down the tempo as much as possible to protect the lead and almost paid the penalty when Delhi struck the bar three time in the space of a few minutes. Riise went on a lung bursting run into the box and his curling shot hit the post, with Malouda heading it to the post and then the rebound fell for Dos Santos, who relieved the pressure by shooting it wide.
Around the 65 minute mark, tempers started flaring as both Jofre and Dos Santos started shoving each other. Referee Pranjal Banerjee was quick to diffuse the situation before showing yellow card to both the players. Delhi Dynamos were given a chance for a consolation goal when Denson Devadas lunged in on Roberto Carlos. Carlos took the resulting freekick and had almost scored despite Elinton Andrade getting his body behind the powerful shot.
The match ended with a 2-0 scoreline in favour of FC Goa, who now face defending Champions Atletico de Kolkata in their next match on 7th October.