ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 10 Review

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As we approach the halfway point of ISL 2023–24, another week of competition concludes. Petr Kratky and Gerard Zaragoza, the two new head coaches of their respective teams, took over this week. Punjab FC’s hunt for their first victory in the top level continues, as FC Goa, Mumbai City FC, and Mohun Bagan Super Giants maintain their undefeated streak. As another interesting week unfolds, we take a look at some of the major moments and pivotal occurrences from this lively week.

Islanders, Gaurs play out a cautious draw

FC Goa and Mumbai City FC faced off in the first game of the match week at Goa’s Fatorda Stadium. Since it was Petr Kratky’s first game leading the Islanders, the excitement started for the fans even before the game started. Despite the flurry of goals this fixture has produced in the past, both clubs had to settle for a scoreless draw. The outcome would have pleased both head coaches, as both teams maintained their winless starts to the 2023-2024 ISL season.

ISL

Manolo Marquez voiced his worries about his team’s lack of effort in front of goal, yet he was extremely grateful for the efforts of his players. The Spaniard went on, “I think we could do more with the ball in the attacking third.” Manolo Marquez will be extremely worried about the form of Carlos Martinez and Noah Sadaoui in front of goal. Regarding Petr Kratky, he would have been pleased to begin his time at Mumbai City with a clean sheet and a positive result against one of the top teams in the league.

Rafael Crivellaro runs the show at Marina Arena

After a string of ties recently, Owen Coyle’s Chennaiyin FC overcame Bengaluru FC 2-0 in the second encounter of the match week at the Marina Arena to record their second victory of the ISL season. Before the game, Bengaluru FC fired manager Simon Grayson after losing to Mumbai City FC 4-0 at home. In the meantime, assistant coach Renedy Singh took control. However, Owen Coyle’s team proved to be too strong for the Blues in the end, winning all three points by converting two penalties.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 10 Review WhatsApp Image 2023 12 18 at 00.46.35 fe1eb0a3 edited

There were many raised eyebrows when Rafael Crivellaro, the Brazilian midfielder, returned to Chennaiyin FC. Fans of Chennaiyin FC were also worried because of Crivellaro’s injury record over the previous three seasons. However, Rafael Crivellaro’s on-field performances have silenced his critics. The Brazilian scored the first penalty and won the second penalty, which was converted by Jordan Murray. Rafael Crivellaro is now the league leader in goal contributions with three goals and five assists after his goal against BFC.

Despite injuries and suspensions, Kerala Blasters find a way through

Kerala Blasters defeated Punjab FC in the match week’s third game, winning 1-0. Early in the second half, Greek forward Dimitrios Diamantakos converted a penalty kick to score the sole goal of the match. Despite the Gaurs having played two fewer games than Kerala Blasters, the Blasters have now tied FC Goa for first place in the standings with their victory. Punjab FC is yet to win in the ISL this season, therefore their search for their first victory in the competition continues.

Kerala Blasters entered the game as clear favorites considering their recent performance and standing in the league. However, the Blasters themselves had their worries before the game. The captain of the Blasters, Adrian Luna, was ruled out of the match due to an injury he sustained during training. Additionally suspended for this game was Danish Farooq, who has started every game for the Blasters this season. Head Coach Ivan Vukomanovic was also suspended for the game for his recent comments on referees. Long-term absentees Jeakson Singh, Freddy, and Aiban Dohling were also not available to them. However, Ivan Vukomanic’s team proved to be formidable again as they managed to overcome Punjab FC.

ISL

The local players of Kerala Blasters rose to the situation admirably to win all three points for the Blasters. Throughout the whole game, Mohammed Azhar, who stepped up for Danish Farooq, hardly made a mistake. Mohammed Aimen, his twin brother, was named man of the match for his outstanding performance on the wings. Vibin Mohanan was also brilliant in the middle of the park. Leskovic, Hormipam’s replacement in the starting lineup, also looked quite comfortable playing at the back with Milos Drincic.

Mohun Bagan Super Giants continue to impress in ISL

In the fourth encounter of the match week, Mohun Bagan Super Giants defeated Northeast United FC with ease. The Mariners are now unbeaten in their last 16 ISL games. Although Phalguni Singh’s incredible strike gave the Highlanders the early lead, the Mariners controlled most of the game with 23 shots to Northeast United’s 6 shots. The equalizing goal was scored by Deepak Tangri, with the subsequent goals coming from Jason Cummings and Subhasish Bose.

ISL

Although the focus lately has been on Mohun Bagan SG’s elimination in the AFC Cup group round, the Mariners have surprised many by far in ISL this season. Despite playing one fewer game than FC Goa, they are only one point behind the league leaders in third place in the standings. They have the third-best defensive record in the league and have tied for the most goals scored thus far this season. In contrast, Northeast United has failed to win its previous five games after having a fantastic start to the season. They have not kept a clean sheet in their last eight games, indicating their defensive woes.

Scott Cooper blasts efforts of Jamshedpur FC players

With a narrow victory over Jamshedpur FC, Bengaluru FC ended their seven-game winless run and secured their second victory of the current ISL season. When the final whistle blew, Javi Hernandez’s penalty remained as the difference. After being named as Simon Grayson’s long-term replacement, Gerard Zaragoza, the new manager of Bengaluru FC, oversaw his debut match. He was delighted to start his tenure at Bengaluru FC with a win.

Jamshedpur FC has only won one of their last ten games, and they are now ranked tenth in the league. Behind Hyderabad FC, they have scored the second-fewest goals in the league with just six. In the press conference following the game, head coach Scott Cooper expressed his disappointment with the players’ performance and expressed doubts about them. He questioned his players’ will to win and their efforts. In addition, he reminded the players that the January transfer window is around the corner and that some players need to be worried about their situations.

ISL

Scott Cooper added, “What’s missing is probably some players with a real desire to win this. It’s not a question of tactics, because we’re in this every game. It comes down to the nitty-gritty of how much you want to win and whether are you willing to do it right. And so, part of football teams and successful ones I’ve been on, it’s not always been (having) the most blessed players, but they have a real desire and a drive to win. And I’m searching for those players in our football club. We’ve got some, but we don’t have enough. And with the January transfer window looming, some players should be very concerned”.

East Bengal holds Mumbai City for a draw

The sixth match of the match week ended in a 0-0 tie between East Bengal and Mumbai City FC at the Mumbai Football Arena. Mumbai City FC missed a few games earlier in the campaign because of ACL obligations, hence they had to play two games this match week. Petr Kratky, the new manager, made his home debut, but his team was once again forced to settle for a 0-0 draw. As for East Bengal FC, Carles Cuadrat will be happy that his team is now enjoying a four-game unbeaten streak.

ISL

Both sides played quite well on defense and were very wary of moving too many players forward. Throughout the whole game, just three shots were on goal, with two of those coming from the Islanders. With three straight clean sheets, Carles Cuadrat was pleased with his defense. Hijazi Maher, the center-back from Jordan, was outstanding in the middle of East Bengal’s defense. Petr Kratky, on the other hand, would not be pleased with his team’s failure to win despite controlling 70% of the possession. The defending shield holders are now four points behind FC Goa, who are leading the league, following this draw.

Odisha FC too good for lackluster Hyderabad FC

At the Kalinga Stadium, Hyderabad FC and Odisha FC played in the match week’s final match. With four ties and five losses from nine games, Hyderabad FC came into this match without a victory in the league this season. On the other side, Odisha FC came into this match fresh off a historic AFC Cup victory over Basundhara Kings. With a 3-0 victory over the Nizams, Odisha FC maintained their stellar home record as Sergio Lobera’s team is currently undefeated at home in the league this season.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 10 Review WhatsApp Image 2023 12 18 at 00.57.42 01fb1b7d edited

Diego Mauricio was suspended for the game, therefore Roy Krishna started in his place. In the first half, the Fijian attacker took advantage of his opportunity to open the scoring. Senegalese defender Mourtada Fall increased Odisha’s advantage before Krishna scored once more to end the game. With this win, Odisha FC are now unbeaten in their last 5 games in the league. After this defeat, Hyderabad FC is winless in 10 ISL games this season. Off the field, the team is currently facing a transfer ban and Felipe Amorin and Oswaldo Alanis both have left Hyderabad FC in the middle of the season.


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Shyam Sundar
Shyam Sundar
A youthful, diehard supporter of the Indian Football Team and Chennaiyin FC. Before the Lockdown, I didn't often watch Indian football! I occasionally kept up with the Blue Tigers, but not consistently. But ever since the lockdown, I've become really interested in Indian football. I may not have a background in journalism, but Indian football is something I am really passionate about.

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