Football

ISL | Chennaiyin picks up full points in a thriller against Jamshedpur

Making his mark: Anirudh Thapa scoring Chennaiyin’s first goal in the opening minute to become the first Indian to find the net in this edition of the league.  

Chennaiyin FC prevailed 2-1 over Jamshedpur FC, in a thrilling, end-to-end contest, to get off the mark in the Indian Super League with three points in Vasco on Tuesday.

Chennaiyin proved too strong and too quick on the night for its former boss Owen Coyle in the Jamshedpur dugout. New signing Esmael Goncalves scored a penalty and also played his part in the opening goal, which came in the first minute of the game.

It was his low cross from the right which Anirudh Thapa, operating as a right-side midfielder in a diamond 4-4-2, fired into the net from inside the box. The 22-year-old became the first Indian goal-scorer of the season.

After taking the lead, Chennaiyin looked comfortable playing on the break with skipper Rafael Crivellaro pulling the strings in the middle. In the 26th minute, Goncalves doubled the lead from a spot-kick after Issac Vanmalsawma’s foul on Lallianzuala Chhangte.

Chennaiyin had four shots on target within the first 30 minutes, and it needed T.P. Rehenesh to stop Jamshedpur from falling further behind.

Jamshedpur’s threat came down the flanks thanks to Chennaiyin’s narrow formation. Nerijus Valskis met Jackichand Singh’s cross with a leaping header to pull one back nine minutes before the break. That remained the only big chance that came his way as he struggled for service.

Chennaiyin could have added to its lead in the second half but a penalty shout went against striker Jakub Sylvestr.

Chennaiyin goalkeeper Vishal Kaith offered a way back for Jamshedpur when he spilled the ball into the feet of Issac but luckily for him, Enes Sipovic cleared the effort off the goalline.

Chennaiyin stood firm in the final stretch of the game to get Csaba Laszlo’s reign off to a winning start.

The result: Jamshedpur FC 1 (Nerijus Valskis 37) lost to Chennaiyin FC 2 (Anirudh Thapa 1, Esmael Goncalves 26).

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2021 5:03:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/isl-chennaiyin-picks-up-full-points-in-a-thriller-against-jamshedpur/article33172051.ece

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