Football

ISL | Crivellaro is Chennaiyin’s hero

Rafael’s day out: Crivellaro proved unstoppable against Blasters.

Rafael’s day out: Crivellaro proved unstoppable against Blasters.  

The Brazilian nets a brace; Ogbeche’s effort in vain for Kerala

There was a flood of goals, nine in all, including a hat-trick by Kerala Blasters captain Bartholomew Ogbeche, at the Nehru Stadium here on Saturday, but it was former two-time champion Chennaiyin FC which walked away a 6-3 winner in the Hero Indian Super League game.

The big win helped the visitors climb a rung to fifth and a step closer to the playoff zone. The game was everything that Chennaiyin coach Owen Coyle had predicted, and it had many stars too. It was Chennaiyin midfielder Rafael Crivellaro who was the star of the show with his brilliant play in the last few minutes of the first half, a period in which the side scored three goals. The Brazilian, whose twisty dancing moves had the Blasters in a tizzy, scored two of them and had a hand in another.

A gift

Chennaiyin’s opening goal, in the 39th minute, was virtually a gift from Blasters goalkeeper T.P. Rehenesh. After receiving a backpass, Rehenesh tapped the ball directly to Crivellaro, the most dangerous man on the night, and the Brazilian was quick to grab the opportunity, pushing it into the empty net. That shattered Rehenesh and appeared to play on his mind for the rest of the game.

Five minutes later, Crivellaro was at it again, swiftly pushing the ball to Lithuanian Nerijus Valskis — the top-scorer this season — even as he was brought down by the central defenders. Valskis produced a bullet of a shot that gave Rehenesh no chance. Valskis finished with two goals while Lallianzuala Chhangte had two too.

Ogbeche pumped in three superb goals in the second half — the first after a soft slide and the next with a fiery shot — but with Crivellaro doing all the damage in the first half, the home captain’s effort proved inadequate.

The result: Kerala Blasters 3 (Bartholomew Ogbeche 48, 65 & 76) lost to Chennaiyin FC 6 (Rafael Crivellaro 39 & 45+1, Nerijus Valskis 45 & 90, Lallianzuala Chhangte 59 & 80).

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Printable version | Apr 1, 2020 8:27:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/isl-crivellaro-is-chennaiyins-hero/article30716432.ece

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