THE KERALA PREMIER LEAGUE is set to witness a grand finale clash between Kerala State Electricity Board Football Club and Golden Threads Football Club.
In two simultaneous semi-final matches, KSEB and Golden Threads defeated BASCO FC and Sports Academy Tirur to make it to the grand finale.
In the first semi-final, hed at the EMS Corporation Stadium in Kozhikode, last season's runner-up KSEB ensured they would appear in back to back finals. The champions of KPL 2016-17 were clearly the superior side compared to their opponents BASCO, and took the lead in the first 15 minutes via Viknesh.
But half an hour in, a defensive error saw Ajesh score an own goal which brought BASCO on level terms.
The jostling for the game-clincher went all the way into the 80th minute when KSEB were awarded a penalty which Nijo Gilbert calmly converted, ensuring the victory for his club.
In the second semi-final, Kochi-based Golden Threads FC made their way into the final for the first time in club history.
A goal by Quattara Sie, a player from Ivory Coast, got GTFC the all-important lead which they were able to hold onto till the end of the match.
The final will be played on 10th April, Sunday, at 3:30 pm at Kozhikode's EMS Corporation Stadium.
Both KSEB and Golden Threads came from Group B this season and they played each other last month during the group stage. In that match, KSEB came out the winner by a margin of 2-0, with John Paul and Nijo Gilbert scoring in the second half.
So, KSEB, who have established themselves as one of the perpetual heavyweights in KPL recently, will have a psychological advantage going into the final; which Golden Threds will have to approach their first KPL final experience from the perspective of overturning past shortcomings.
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