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ISL 2021 PLAYOFFS - FC Goa dominate but get held to draw by Mumbai City in first leg semi

The first leg of Semi-final 1 of Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2020-21 ended in a 2-2 draw between Mumbai City FC and FC Goa at the Fatorda Stadium on Friday. Igor Angulo scored a penalty to give FC Goa the lead, but Hugo Boumous cancelled out the Spaniard’s strike by scoring an equaliser in the 38th minute. Saviour Gama then netted a spectacular shot from range early in the second half before Mourtada Fall scored another leveller for the Islanders.

Both sides looked to attack from the outset as FC Goa were the first to register an effort on target in the 5th minute when Saviour exchanged passes with Jorge Ortiz on the left flank before forcing Amrinder Singh into making a save.

The Gaurs were looking threatening near Mumbai City FC’s box and had a strong penalty appeal turned down by the referee in the 17th minute. However, they did get a penalty two minutes later after Mandar Rao Dessai fouled Ortiz in the box. Angulo stepped up to take the penalty and sent the goalkeeper the wrong way to give FC Goa a 1-0 lead.

The Islanders looked to respond immediately and began playing with more purpose after trailing. Bartholomew Ogbeche was put through on goal by Boumous in the 26th minute and the Nigerian striker hit the target but Dheeraj Singh came to FC Goa’s rescue with a save. Bipin Singh also dragged an effort from distance wide of the target 10 minutes later.

Mumbai City FC’s pressure eventually paid off albeit with a bit of luck in the 38th minute. A quickly-taken freekick resulted in Boumous in possession of the ball with space to run into. He carried the ball forward with him before attempting to pass the ball. However, Boumous’ attempted pass ricocheted off an FC Goa player and fell straight back into his path for him to enter the box and pull the trigger to make it 1-1.

Both sides could have scored a second goal before halftime but couldn’t take their chance. Ortiz weaved his way into the box and got his shot away which was blocked by a Mumbai City FC player. Ogbeche was on the end of the Islanders’ chance when a Bipin Singh cross from the left found him in the box.  The Nigerian striker headed the cross on target but Dheeraj made the save as the teams went into the break with it all to play for in the second half.

Ogbeche had the first two chances of the second half as Mumbai City FC looked to take the lead after the restart. He first blazed a Boumous cross from the right over goal and then couldn’t keep his header from a Mandar cross on target.

Those misses came back to hurt the Islanders a minute before the hour mark when a stunning strike from distance by Saviour went into the back of the net and made it 2-1 for FC Goa. Their lead lasted shorter than the first time though thanks to Fall, who was unmarked and headed in an Ahmed Jahouh cross from the left to make it 2-2 in the 62nd minute.

Both sides continued to play on the front foot as Ogbeche failed to hit the target with another attempt of his from just outside the box in the 73rd minute. The closing stages saw both sides adopt a more cautious approach as they looked to keep things tight at the back and not give the opponent any advantage ahead of the second leg on Monday. Adil Khan tried his luck from distance late in the game but couldn’t hit the target as the first leg ended in a draw.

ISL Media Release

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