Stalemate in capital as Dynamos held by Kolkata

Delhi Dynamos FC vs Atlético de Kolkata
Delhi Dynamos defending an Atlético de Kolkata corner.

Delhi Dynamos FC saw their two-match winning streak end after being held to a goalless draw by Atlético de Kolkata at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Delhi. The draw keeps both teams in the same position as they were when the day started;  Delhi lie fifth, one point and one place ahead of NorthEast United FC, while Kolkata remain in third spot, behind FC Goa on goal difference. Kolkata could have guaranteed themselves a berth in the semifinals with a win, but the draw means their winless streak stands at three games.

Delhi looked the more attacking side at the start, enjoying ample possession and making threatening runs toward the opposition’s box. Kolkata had a couple of shots as well, as they looked to play on the counter. The best chance of the first half fell to Delhi midfielder Souvik Chakraborthy in the 17th minute. Striker Mads Junker found himself in a shooting position in the box, and his shot fell to Chakroborthy after a deflection, but the midfielder’s shot was too close to Kolkata keeper Apoula Edel Bete, who made a good low save.

Kolkata countered moments later, with Jakub Podaný finding Baljit Sahni with a precise pass inside the box, but the striker’s shot was scuffed and went harmlessly wide.

The second half once again began with Delhi on the front foot. They had a couple of good chances, the first in the 52nd minute as star attacking midfielder Gustavo dos Santos played it to the far post where the ball was met by the outstretched leg of Junker. But the shot lacked power and fell kindly into the hands of Edel Bete.

Delhi Dynamos FC vs Atlético de Kolkata
Fikru (L) and Hans Mulder.

Dos Santos looked pretty lively and menacing throughout the game, and just a few minutes later he took a dipping shot from outside the box, but Edel again reacted well to parry it out. Delhi continued to prod the Kolkata defence, probing for an opening, but the visitors stood firm at the end. Kolkata too had a couple of good chances, the best coming in the 83rd minute as Jofre played a ball across the box to Mohammed Rafi, but his diving header was kept out by Delhi keeper Kristof Van Hout to keep the scores at 0-0.

Delhi’s final home game of the league phase ended with the side lying just outside the top four. They will hope to take a step closer to qualification when they travel to Pune for their next game against FC Pune City on December 6. Atlético de Kolkata also travel to Maharashtra, as they are hosted by Mumbai City FC on December 7, when a win will confirm their semifinal spot.   

Match awards

Hero of the Match: Gustavo dos Santos (Delhi Dynamos FC) 

Swift Moment of the Match: Edel Apoula Bete (Atlético de Kolkata) (Watch here)

Amul Fittest Player of the Match: Gustavo dos Santos

ISL Emerging Player of the Match: Souvik Ghosh (Delhi Dynamos FC)

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