Goa edge past Chennaiyin to seal second place in the standings

FC Goa secured a narrow 1-0 win over bottom-placed Chennaiyin FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa on Thursday to ensure they head into the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2018-19 semi-finals as the second-placed team behind Bengaluru FC. Both Bengaluru and Goa have 34 points from 18 matches, but the Blues occupy the top spot on the basis of their superior head to head record against the Gaurs.

For last season’s champions Chennaiyin, the loss pretty much sums up a disappointing season which saw them win just two matches in the entire campaign.

  • Ferran Corominas scored the only goal of the match on the 26th minute
  • Christopher Herd had the best chance to score for Chennaiyin in the second-half, but failed to hit the target.
  • The win ensures Goa head to the semi-finals as the second-placed team.

Faced with the tough task of keeping the free-scoring Gaurs at bay in their own backyard, Chennaiyin started the match well and denied the home side any space or time on the ball. To top it off, John Gregory's men also looked the more dangerous of the two sides going forward, with Jeje Lalpekhlua getting on the end of a couple of half chances but failing to convert.

However, Goa's attacking prowess finally persevered as they went on to take the lead on the 26th minute. Ahmed Jahouh picked up Jackichand Singh's run into the box perfectly with a long pass and the nippy winger managed to get a deft touch to lay the ball off for an onrushing Ferran Corominas. The Spaniard dispatched his shot convincingly past Karanjit Singh to open the scoring for the night.

Chennaiyin created a dangerous opportunity in the dying minutes of the first-half when Anirudh Thapa got into a brilliant position to square the ball for a host of his teammates waiting inside the six-yard box. However, Goa defender Mourtada Fall put in a brilliant block to snuff out the danger.

The home team went into the break with a goal to the good.

Minutes after the restart, Chennaiyin got a good opportunity to level things up from Thapa's corner. Jeje tried a cheeky header with his back to the goal but his effort was too high to worry Naveen Kumar in the Goa goal.

The Gaurs, meanwhile, kept probing for the second goal and created some dangerous opportunities of their own.

Chennaiyin's golden opportunity of the night came about on the 68th minute when the ball fell kindly for Chris Herd inside the Goa box after a free-kick. The Australian ended up rushing his effort and missed the target altogether.

Both teams created a few half-chances in the final 20 minutes but there were no further goals in the match. The contest ended 1-0 in the home team's favour.

HERO OF THE MATCH - Ferran Corominas

Ferran Corominas once again proved why he is FC Goa’s talisman and made all the difference on the night with the only goal of the match. He is the Hero of the Match.

CLUB AWARDS 

Club Award – FC Goa

Swift Limitless Player of the Match – Ahmed Jahouh

DHL Winning Pass of the Match – Jackichand Singh

ISL Emerging Player of the Match – Saviour Gama

Hero of the Match – Ferran Corominas

Watch the match highlights here:

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