Matchweek 11 of the Indian Super League (ISL) 2023-24 season showcased a mixture of class, skills and passion. Across seven matches, 18 were scored with seven red cards. Only two matches ended on level terms with just a single goalless draw. 

The action kicked off with Punjab FC showing brilliance against Chennaiyin FC, securing their first-ever ISL win after 11 matches.

The following match, between Mumbai City FC and Mohun Bagan Super Giant, was an epitome of passion which not only witnessed a barrage of red cards but also an intense level of competitiveness that the two heavyweights shared.

Jamshedpur FC thrashed Hyderabad FC when the two teams clashed at the Gachibowli Stadium in Hyderabad, preventing Hyderabad FC from their first win this season.

A resilient East Bengal FC held an in-from Odisha FC to a goalless draw in the fourth game of the week.

In Mohun Bagan SG’s second game of the week, they suffered their second consecutive loss owing to a brilliant attacking display from FC Goa.

In the penultimate game of the week, Bengaluru FC scored a last-second equaliser against NorthEast United FC to deny them all three points in Bengaluru.

Meanwhile, Kerala Blasters FC continued their impressive form by breaking Mumbai City FC’s unbeaten run this season.

As we head into Matchweek 12, here is a look at the key takeaways from Matchweek 11.

Punjab FC secure historic win

In their 11th game, Punjab FC finally registered their first-ever win in ISL beating Chennaiyin FC 1-0 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Delhi. This was the most number of games any side has played before stealing all three points off a fixture in the league, joining East Bengal FC (in 2021-22) and Delhi Dynamos FC (in 2018-19) who had accomplished the unfortunate feat.

“It’s a matter of work (finishing). It's a matter of the quality of the players, their talent, the decisions (they make) at that moment. We have very good players to finish the situations like today. But don’t forget that our players are coming (into the game) after a long period of heavy psychological (pressure) situation from not winning too many games. And this affects our players at that moment. But I believe winning this game will give them extra motivation because they need it. I was very happy to see my players so glad today,” stated Punjab FC head coach Staikos after the win in the post-match press conference.

The Barrage of Red Cards

When Mohun Bagan SG met Mumbai City FC in Matchweek 11, history was made in an unexpected manner. Although the match witnessed only three goals, two from the Islanders and one from the Mariners, it was the number of red cards that caught the spotlight. 

A total of 14 cards were shown in the fixture consisting of seven yellow and seven red cards. Never before in ISL did we witness any game matching the same numbers in terms of total cards shown and red cards shown.

Mumbai City FC also broke Mohun Bagan SG’s unbeaten run, winning this fixture narrowly.

Jamshedpur FC’s all-time high

On Thursday, against a winless Hyderabad FC, Jamshedpur FC created history when they sent five past the Hyderabad FC keeper. Through the first hattrick of the season, scored by Daniel Chima Chukwu, the Men of Steel won the match 5-0. 

With this five-goal margin, Jamshedpur FC have registered their outright largest win in ISL history.

Ecstatic over the huge win, Jamshedpur FC head coach Scott Cooper shared, “Teams have seen us pass a ball, and make chances, but they haven’t seen us play a complete game. Tonight we played a more complete game and even then Rei (Tachikawa) and Jeremy (Manzorro) missed two huge chances."

Amrinder Singh reaches milestone in Kolkata

East Bengal FC have made quite a name for themselves this season owing to an impressive defensive display, securing five clean sheets in 10 matches. Taking on Odisha FC in Matchweek 11, the Red and Gold Brigade succeeded in keeping up the reputation, restricting the star-studded Kalinga Warriors to a goalless draw. This encounter was the first between the two sides that ended in a goalless draw, and the first match this season where Odisha FC failed to find the back of the net.

Odisha FC goalkeeper Amrinder Singh recorded his 42nd clean sheet in the ISL with a 0-0 scoreline, the most for any goalkeeper in the league’s history, overtaking Bengaluru FC’s Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (41).

FC Goa’s defensive prowess

In their dominating 4-1 win against Mohun Bagan SG, FC Goa finally conceded a goal after five matches. Until Dimitri Petratos scored the brilliant freekick in the 45+8th minute of the match, FC Goa had spent 545 minutes without conceding,  creating a new ISL record overtaking Mumbai City FC’s record of conceding a goal after 541 minutes from the ISL 2014.

This was also the largest defeat for the Mariners at home.

NorthEast United FC continue away drought

With a last-gasp comeback from Bengaluru FC to end the match 1-1, the Men of Steel were denied an away win yet again. 

NorthEast United FC have failed to win any of their last 22 away games in the ISL with six draws and sixteen losses.

Adding more to their misery, the Highlanders have not been able to keep a clean sheet in any of these matches in the league.

Dimi magic in Kochi fortress

Kerala Blasters FC finally brought an end to Mumbai City FC’s unbeaten start to the season when they downed the Islanders 2-0 at home in the concluding game of Matchweek 11.

Both the goals were results of impeccable chemistry coordination between the front two of the Blasters, Greek striker Dimitrios Diamantakos and Ghanaian Kwame Peprah, both, scoring one and assisting the other. 

Dimitrios Diamantakos recorded a goal and an assist in a single game for the fourth time in ISL, the most such instances by any Kerala Blasters FC player in the league’s history, winning on all four occasions.