Late Chennaiyin equaliser forces stalemate in Chennai

A late 87th minute equaliser from Ninthoi Meitei cancelled out Ayush’s early own goal, leading to yet another frustrating result for the Red and Gold Brigade away from home.

Looking to start proceedings on a positive note post the international break, Coach Cuadrat handed Vishnu and Hijazi their first starts of the season. The boys started off brightly, keeping most of the ball and forcing Chennaiyin back into their own half in the early proceedings. The hosts then managed to create a couple of chances before a forced break due to the lights going out calmed things down. Just at the stroke of the 30th minute mark, Vishnu cut one back into the box from the left wing which was steered into their own net by Ayush, giving East Bengal the crucial lead in the first half. Falling behind at the 30th minute mark, the opposition threw everything at the red and gold defence during the remainder of the half but the defence remained resolute and the boys preserved the lead going into the half time break.

The second half began with a flurry of set pieces for both sides but there was no major chance at the end of these to take advantage of. In the 55th minute, Coach Carles introduced Nandhakumar to the fray, as he replaced Vishnu who looked in a bit of discomfort. The opposition also introduced as many as 3 new players before Coach Cuadrat made his 2nd substitution in the 71st minute bringing on Aman Chettri for Saul Crespo. Shortly after, Mahesh found Nandha’s run but the latter could not finish past Debjit, who managed to deflect his effort away from goal. With just 4 minutes away from full time, Pardo lost the ball at the edge of the box, presenting Rafa Crivellaro the ball and the season campaigner’s angled ball found Ninthoi in space, who managed to beat an on rushing Gill to the ball and slotted the ball into the far post. With very little time to play plus an additional 7 minutes added on after the 90th, both sides tried looking for the winner but no further goal bound action was recorded in the dying minutes of the game. A late red card for Chennaiyin player Edwards provided the only flash point in injury time as both sides settled for a draw.

Speaking at the post match conference, Coach Cuadrat once again called for patience as he stressed on the importance of the team needing to do more when opportunities present themselves on the pitch. Concluding his post match talk, the Gaffer called on his foreigners to take more responsibility and lead the charge in the coming games as the Red and Gold Brigade head into a busy December with 4 crucial fixtures before the next international break.

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