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Indian Arrows had speed, lacked direction; Gokulam Kerala capitalises

NT NETWORK

Vasco

Indian Arrows flew in phases of speed but lacked direction and that enabled Gokulam Kerala FC score a solitary goal win in the I-League match at the Tilak maidan in Vasco on
Friday.

In what was a battle between youth and visiting brigade tinted with foreign colours, the latter won a contest that never rose to great height but showed that All India Football Federation (AIFF) developmental squad needs time to stitch itself together and visitors Gokulam Kerala FC cannot take their opponents for granted for too long.

Through ninety minutes of football it was Ugandan forward Henry Kisekka’s strike in the second half that differentiated the two.

The first fifteen minutes saw Indian Arrows gaining advantage over Gokulam Kerala on winning the second ball. The winners, in contrast, moved some moves forward but failed in the finish because their strikers Henry and Marcus Joseph either waited too long to shoot or were overpowered by the sturdy and hardworking Indian arrow defenders.

In this time, Gokulam came close to scoring twice and the best was when Amiri’s powerful strike from the top of the box got deflected after hitting an Indian Arrow defender.

Indian Arrows enjoyed ball possession but lacked finish. Moriangthem Singh crafted play from the midfield and was the team’s dead ball specialist but his efforts went in vain with the team unable to produce a goal scoring
striker.

At the end of the first half, Gokulam were left wondering what they needed to do to break down the young Arrows as their goal was well chaperoned by Samik Mitra, who also had a confident game.

Gokulam took the lead within five minutes of resumption when a long ball found Kisekka on the top of the Arrows box on the right. The Ugandan got away from his markers in a flash and neatly placed the ball at the left-hand corner of the Arrows net.

In the 76th minute, a wonderful Gokulam move resulted in a Joseph header deflecting off an Arrows defender and going in, but Samik brought off a brilliant save.

Five minutes later, Etienne brought down an onrushing Aman Chetri after the young forward had dispossessed him in front of goal and was headed towards it. With just the keeper ahead, the referee had no option but to give marching orders to the burly Trinidadian centre-back.

Gokulam have won both their opening games and now sit pretty on top of the table with six points.

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