ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 12 Report

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In the concluding fixtures of the calendar year, Matchweek 12 in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 season showcased a concise yet thrilling line-up of just five matches, with Odisha FC notably participating in two encounters.

Despite its brevity, the matchweek was brimming with excitement, featuring a broken streak, remarkable goals, and dynamic performances. Odisha FC emerged victorious in both clashes against Punjab FC and Jamshedpur FC. Kerala Blasters FC, following their success in ending Mumbai City FC’s unbeaten run the previous week, notched their maiden ISL victory against Mohun Bagan Super Giant. Meanwhile, Mumbai City FC secured a dominant win over Chennaiyin FC, while NorthEast United FC and FC Goa battled to a 1-1 draw, bringing a close to the footballing action for the calendar year.

Odisha FC maintains their momentum with a narrow 1-0 victory over Punjab FC in ISL

Odisha FC continued their defensive prowess, securing their third consecutive clean sheet and extending their unbeaten streak to 10 games in all competitions with a 1-0 triumph over Punjab FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi on Tuesday. The Kalinga Warriors capitalized on an early goal from Fijian forward Roy Krishna, clinching three points in the encounter. Despite the home side’s recent victory against Chennaiyin FC, they couldn’t build on the momentum in this clash.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 12 Report
Roy Krishna of Odisha FC strikes a pose after scoring against Punjab FC in the ISL

Under Lobera’s guidance, Isak has made significant strides in his performance. He played a pivotal role in setting up the decisive goal for Krishna from close range, and the former Bengaluru FC star wasted no time in calmly slotting the ball into the back of the net. Following this, Mauricio aimed on target in the 27th minute, navigating through a challenging situation to shoot from a difficult angle, but the home side managed to thwart that effort.

Punjab FC also had opportunities, with Samuel Kynshi and Madih Talal collaborating to test the Odisha FC defence. However, a resilient backline, anchored by the experienced goalkeeper Amrinder Singh, who now boasts 44 clean sheets in his ISL career, ensured that the home team posed minimal threat to Odisha FC’s chances of securing another victory.

Kerala Blasters FC claimed victory against Mohun Bagan Super Giant, securing a top spot on the league table.

Kerala Blasters FC achieved a historic milestone with their inaugural triumph against Mohun Bagan Super Giant in the ISL, securing a 1-0 victory through Dimitrios Diamantakos’ ninth-minute goal at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan Stadium in Kolkata. This significant win propelled them to the summit of the league table on Wednesday. Ivan Vukomanovic finally got the better of his counterpart Juan Ferrando, whose team suffered a third consecutive defeat with this outcome.

The scoreline doesn’t fully capture the dominance exhibited by Kerala Blasters FC throughout the match. The dynamic duo of Diamantakos and Kwame Peprah consistently troubled the Mariners’ backline. Whether through direct plays with long balls or intricate interplay between the two forwards, they relentlessly challenged the home team’s defence, leaving no stone unturned in their pursuit of victory.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 12 Report
A superb solo strike from Dimitrios Diamantakos earned Kerala Blasters FC three precious points against Mohun Bagan SG in ISL

The goal spurred excitement among the visiting team as Diamantakos surpassed Jorge Pereyra Diaz to claim the league’s top goal-scorer spot with seven goals to his credit. Peprah smoothly manoeuvred across the Mariners’ backline and attempted a shot similar to Diamantakos’s from the same angle shortly afterwards, albeit without success. Even their domestic counterpart, Rahul KP, sought to contribute. Mohammed Azhar passed the ball to Rahul on the right side of the box, but the striker’s attempt went off-target, a chance he arguably should have converted effortlessly.

This highlighted the complete control maintained by the visitors throughout the game. Despite having a talented frontline, MBSG struggled to create significant chances. In a moment of quick footwork, Hugo Boumous evaded Danish Farooq to deliver a cross for Armando Sadiku just after the hour mark. However, the Albanian couldn’t generate enough power behind the shot to equalize. Vishal Kaith remained composed, maintaining a level score even into the added time of the second half. The Mariners pinned their hopes on Dimitrios Petratos to work his set-piece magic once again, but in the context of the game, the striker couldn’t get the ball past the Kerala Blasters FC defensive wall.

Read More – I-League Matchweek 12 Review

Mumbai City FC clinches a commanding 3-0 victory against Chennaiyin FC with a clinical performance

In a resounding victory at the Mumbai Football Arena (MFA), Mumbai City FC orchestrated a clinical 3-0 win over Chennaiyin FC, heading into the season break and the New Year on a positive note in the ISL.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 12 Report
Mumbai City FC players celebrate in style after securing victory in the ISL

Lallianzuala Chhangte, facing his former club, showcased a rediscovered goal-scoring prowess, rebounding from a missed penalty to hammer in a goal in the 52nd minute. The Islanders dominated from the outset, with their attacking front, albeit missing Greg Stewart, creating numerous opportunities against the defensively resilient Chennaiyin FC. Chhangte initiated Mumbai City FC’s comeback in the second half, executing a fine finish from the right side of the box. The Islanders continued their offensive display, with Diaz and Jayesh Rane coming close to securing the second goal.

In the 58th minute, Diaz narrowly missed shooting into an open net, but the Islanders solidified their lead in the 80th minute through Vikram’s penalty. Gurkirat Singh earned the spot-kick after a foul by Chennaiyin FC captain Ryan Edwards, and Vikram converted the opportunity, sparking joyous celebrations among the supporters. Gurkirat later received his well-deserved reward, assuming the role of an exemplary No. 9. In the centre of the box, Lalengmawia Ralte delivered a slick pass that Gill confidently slotted in, marking his inaugural goal in the ISL career.

Roy Krishna leads Odisha FC to an exciting comeback victory against Jamshedpur FC

In a riveting and action-packed first-half spectacle, Odisha FC secured a commanding victory over Jamshedpur FC, propelling the Kalinga Warriors into the ISL season break with soaring confidence. The adept and seasoned frontline of Odisha FC demonstrated seamless cohesion, netting four goals past the Jamshedpur FC defence within the initial 45 minutes to decisively seal the outcome. This triumph extended their unbeaten streak to an impressive 11 games across all competitions.

The standout performer of the match was Roy Krishna, who played a pivotal role in three of the four goals, excluding Mauricio’s converted spot-kick. Krishna initiated the scoring spree by setting up Isak in the 27th minute, allowing the youngster to effortlessly tap in for the equalizer. Nine minutes later, the Fijian capitalized on a rebound from Mauricio’s shot, securing a slight lead for his team from the right-hand side of the box.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 12 Report
A dominant attacking performance earned Odisha FC three points against Jamshedpur FC in the ISL

Mauricio claimed his moment in added time of the first half, earning a penalty due to a foul by TP Rehenesh and confidently slotting it into the net for Odisha FC’s third goal of the night. Krishna continued his relentless performance as the first half concluded. Isak skilfully breached the disorganized backline, and Krishna executed another precise finish to notch up the fifth goal of the night. Odisha FC concludes the opening half of the ISL 2023-24 campaign with an impressive record of seven victories and three draws in 12 games. Their dominance stems from a fluid attacking unit and a robust defensive setup that has conceded only 12 goals thus far.

FC Goa and Northeast United FC settle for a draw to conclude the year

FC Goa faced a 1-1 draw against NorthEast United FC at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati, marking the conclusion of the first half of the ISL season.

The Gaurs recently grappled with the absence of their impactful Spanish midfielder, Victor Rodriguez, sidelined due to injuries after contributing three goals and assists each in the campaign. In his absence, Carlos Martinez stepped up, shifting to the right flank for the evening. This tactical adjustment bore fruit when Martinez, with only two goals before this match, delivered a perfectly curled cross past Jay Gupta. Jithin M.S., the forward, navigated through Sandesh Jhingan and Odei Onaindia effortlessly, hammering the ball past goalkeeper Arshdeep Singh in the 26th minute.

ISL 2023-24 Matchweek 12 Report
FC Goa and NorthEast United FC played out a 1-1 draw before the season break

While Gogoi and Jithin shone in the attacking front, goalkeeper Mirshad Michu played a crucial role in maintaining parity at the back. Michu’s full-stretch dive denied a potent shot from Carl McHugh, who received a pass from Noah after slicing through the NorthEast United FC defence.

Despite FC Goa’s head coach Manolo Marquez’s insistence on securing three points, strategic substitutions featuring Boris Singh, Paulo Retre, and Muhammed Nemil aimed to secure the elusive winner, but it didn’t materialize. FC Goa, however, can draw encouragement from an undefeated first half of the season. In contrast, the Highlanders, following promising performances in recent months, have much to play for in the second half, seeking redemption after a disappointing run in ISL 2022-23.


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Ishayu Gupta
Ishayu Gupta
Mohun Bagan, Madrid and more!

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