Match 73 of Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2020-21 witnessed Kerala Blasters FC being held to a 0-0 draw by Jamshedpur FC at the GMC Stadium in Bambolim on Wednesday. The Blasters dominated the game and created plenty of chances but couldn’t find the all-important goal that would have given them the three points.
Jamshedpur nearly took the lead in the 7th minute following a weak clearance by Albino Gomes from outside his box that went straight to Nerijus Valskis. The Lithuanian striker took his shot after a couple of touches to catch Albino off his line, but the Kerala custodian recovered in time to get his hands on the ball and palm it on to the post.
Kerala registered their first shot of the match on target on the half hour mark after Rohit Kumar tested the goalkeeper with an effort from range. Jamshedpur responded by going up the other end and putting Valskis through on goal. However, the Lithuanian couldn’t quite control the ball and fire a shot away as the chance went abegging.
The Blasters then thought they had scored in the 35th minute after a deflected shot made its way to Gary Hooper, who guided the ball into the net. However, the referee raised his flag for offside to the disappointment of Kerala.
The Englishman went on to rattle the woodwork six minutes later with a thunderous effort from distance that gave the goalkeeper no chance. Jordan Murray also struck the crossbar shortly after when he headed a cross from the right on to the frame of the goal.
Kerala then struck the woodwork for a third time through Lalthathanga Khawlhring just before halftime. After Murray’s header off a cross from the right was saved by the goalkeeper, Khawlhring unleashed a venomous shot that struck the crossbar to dismay of the Kerala players who went into the break wondering how they hadn’t taken the lead.
Kerala and Jamshedpur had early sighters at goal in the second half through Murray and John Fitzgerald respectively but neither of them succeeded in breaking the deadlock. Murray also went agonizingly close to finally scoring in the 67th minute when the Australian headed a cross from the right fractions wide of the target.
Murray then had a couple more attempts in a four-minute span after the 70th minute. The first attempt saw the Australian’s header find the side-netting and the second from outside the box was also off target. Kerala had a big chance to score a late winner in the 89th minute when Sahal Abdul Samad controlled a ball in the box and passed it to substitute Seityasen Singh, who saw his shot blocked by a Jamshedpur defender.
Bakary Kone also had an attempt on goal deep into second half stoppage time blocked by Jamshedpur’s defence. Kerala tried to pile on the pressure from the resulting corner, but Owen Coyle’s men did enough to hold on for a point.
ISL Media Release