Adil, Robin help Pune down Mumbai in Maha Derby

FC Pune City ended their Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2018-19 season with a 2-1 win over Mumbai City FC at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex Stadium in Pune on Saturday. The Maharashtra Derby turned out to be an entertaining affair, but it was the Stallions who came out on top in front of the home fans.

The win also helped Pune to leapfrog ATK to take up the sixth spot on the table, which grants them a direct qualification to the Hero Super Cup. ATK can, however, reclaim their berth with a win over Delhi Dynamos FC on Sunday. Mumbai, on the other hand, end their season as the third-placed team and will move onto the semi-finals.

  • Adil Khan put Pune in the lead with a brilliant finish on the 18th minute.
  • Robin Singh doubled Pune’s advantage on the 84th minute.
  • Arnold Issoko converted a penalty in the dying minutes to pull a goal back for Mumbai.

Mumbai threatened to take an early lead in the match with less than eight minutes on the clock. Paulo Machado swung in a brilliant free kick around the Pune wall and the effort had Pune goalkeeper Kamaljit Singh beat all ends up. But fortunately for the Stallions, the ball hit the intersection between the crossbar and the post and came out.

Pune offered very little going forward in the first 15 minutes, but once they did break forward with intent, it resulted in the first goal of the match. A long clearance by Kamaljit was recycled by Robin Singh, with a little help from Hume. After receiving the ball back from Hume almost 40 yards out, Robin played in a delightful lobbed pass to pick out Adil's run into the box. The Pune midfielder still had a lot to do but pulled off an amazing acrobatic volley to beat Amrinder Singh in the Mumbai goal.

Adil's sensational finish opened up the match, with Pune and Mumbai trading chances in search of the all-important second goal of the match. Despite trailing, the Islanders did look the likeliest to score but the absence of Modou Sougou up front was obvious as most of the attacks fizzled out near the Pune box.

Just before the half-time whistle, Robin could have extended the Stallions’ lead against the flow of the match, but his header was dealt with by Amrinder.

The half ended with the home team 1-0 up and everything to play for in the second half.

Mumbai head coach Jorge Costa brought on Bipin Singh in place of Pranjal Bhumij in an attempt to up the ante in attack and the move almost paid off immediately. The youngster immediately found himself at the thick of the action and tested Kamaljit with a stinging shot.

Shortly after, Lucian Goian, making his 50th Hero ISL appearance for the club, came close to finding the equaliser but his header from a corner was narrowly wide of the post. The Islanders had definitely started the second half brightly.

The Stallions did create a few chances of their own through counter attacks and Amrinder had to be at his best to keep out Rohit Kumar’s powerful drive from distance.

Arnold Issoko, on the other end, squandered a golden opportunity to draw things level just before the hour mark.

The missed opportunities would eventually come back to haunt Mumbai. On the 84th minute,Hume latched onto Mohammed Yasir's cut back and took a shot towards goal. The effort took the slightest of touches off Robin Singh and ended up in the net to make the scoreline 2-0.

But there was another twist left in the match. The away team was given a life line in the dying minutes when the referee awarded Mumbai a penalty kick for a challenge on Goian inside the Pune box. Issoko converted the spot kick to set up an entertaining stoppage time. However, a miraculous comeback was not in the offing as the match ended 2-1 in Pune’s favour.

HERO OF THE MATCH – Iain Hume

Iain Hume put on another five star performance on the night and played a crucial part in his team’s second goal which eventually turned out to be the difference between the two sides. He was adjudged the Hero of the Match.

CLUB AWARDS 

Club Award – FC Pune City

Swift Limitless Player of the Match – Adil Khan 

DHL Winning Pass of the Match – Robin Singh

ISL Emerging Player of the Match – Mohammed Yasir

Hero of the Match – Iain Hume 

WHAT’S NEXT?

Mumbai City FC will host FC Goa for the first leg of their semi-finals encounter on March 9. The second leg will be played in Goa on March 12.

Watch the match highlight here:

Note: Pune’s second goal was initially awarded to Iain Hume but was later ruled in favour of Robin Singh. The article has been edited to reflect the changes.

Visit our videos and photos section for exclusive videos and images from the match. 

Your Comments

Related Stories