Goa and NorthEast share the spoils after first half goals by Sylla and Angulo
FC Goa’s search for their first win in Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2020-21 continued after a 1-1 draw against NorthEast United FC at the Fatorda Stadium on Monday. Idrissa Sylla scored the game’s opener from the penalty spot in the 40th minute and Igor Angulo netted Goa’s equaliser three minutes later.
- Idrissa Sylla opened the scoring from the penalty spot for NorthEast United in the 40th minute.
- Igor Angulo restored parity for FC Goa two minutes before the break.
After an end-to-end start to the game, Goa registered the first shot of the match on target in the 5th minute courtesy a Jorge Mendoza effort that NorthEast goalkeeper Subhasish Roy saved. As both sides began to settle into the game, Goa unsurprisingly enjoyed more possession, but the Highlanders looked dangerous whenever they got near the opposition box.
Most of the game was being played in the Highlanders’ half and fullback Saviour Gama found the ball at his feet inside NorthEast’s penalty box in the 24th minute. His shot on the turn, though, was wide of goal and didn’t test the goalkeeper.
NorthEast came close to scoring 10 minutes later after a deflected cross from the right found its way to Sylla, whose header goalwards went just above the crossbar. The Highlanders, though, took the lead in the 40th minute after Sylla won his side a penalty.
Sylla stepped up to the spot after winning the penalty and scored only for the referee to blow his whistle and ask him to retake the spotkick due to encroachment into the box by one of NorthEast’s players. Undeterred, Sylla confidently stepped up to the spot again and converted the retake calmly to put his side ahead.
However, Goa weren’t behind for too long and scored the equaliser in the 43rd minute following a brilliant cross from the left by Brandon Fernandes, which Angulo directed into the back of the net with a first-time finish to make it all square. Both Sylla and Angulo had another sighter at goal before the end of the half but neither of them managed to net a second as the teams went into the break with the score 1-1.
Goa were quick off the blocks after the restart and it was Angulo, who had their first attempt of the second period when he put a header from a cross wide of the target a few minutes into the half. Mendoza also put an effort from distance wide of goal a minute later as the Gaurs continued to attack.
NorthEast to their credit kept their shape and defended resolutely to deny Goa spaces in dangerous areas. Even though the Gaurs dominated the ball, they couldn’t quite create any clear-cut chances as the half wore on.
Luis Machado tested Goa’s goalkeeper with a direct freekick in the 81st minute but Mohammad Nawaz was up to the task and put the ball behind for a corner. Goa responded through Alberto Noguera, who came close to giving the Gaurs the lead in the 84th minute when his shot from the edge of the box struck the woodwork.
The closing stages of the contest saw both teams get into good areas, but the final ball was either lacking or heroic defending was denying attackers their goal. In the end, the teams had to settle for a point a piece as NorthEast continued their unbeaten start to the season.
Hero of the Match – Lalengmawia
On a night where he became the youngest captain in Hero ISL history, Lalengmawia produced an inspiring display in midfield for NorthEast. He was all over the pitch and created two chances besides also getting a shot away in the attacking third. On the defensive front, Lalengmawia made one clearance, two successful tackles, two blocks and was constantly in the thick of the action.
Club Award – FC Goa and NorthEast United FC
DHL Winning Pass of the Match – Brandon Fernandes
Watch the Match Highlights here: