There was joy and relief for the Kerala Blasters men on Sunday night. Relief because they finally scored a victory at the ISL this season. Joy because they scored a fine win, as they brought the high-flying Odisha FC to the ground at the GMC Athletic Stadium, Bambolim.
Alvaro Vazquez and K. Prasanth were the scorers in Blasters’ 2-1 win, which came after suffering a loss and playing out two draws. Odisha, on the other hand, had come to this match after winning both its matches and scoring nine goals.
On this night, however, the Blasters defence made life difficult for the rival strikers. With Sahal Adul Samad and Adrian Luna taking little time to find their rhythm, the Blasters threatened to take the lead early on. But once again, it was let down by its show in the final third, something its coach Ivan Vukomanovic had expressed concerns about on the eve of the match.
AS IT HAPPENED |
ISL 2021-22, Kerala Blasters FC vs Odisha FC HIGHLIGHTS: KBFC registers first ISL win
There were chances for the Odisha men, too. And there was one long-ranger by Javier Hernandez – all the way from the half-way line – had nearly given them the lead in the 25th minute.
It was still the Blasters that played better in what was a lively opening half. They continued to create chances in the second half and Vazquez converted one of those in the 62nd minute.
After receiving the lovely through ball from Luna, he kept his calm and used all his experience to get past the Odisha defenders and slot the ball home.
Then in the 85th minute, another through ball from Luna saw a quick-footed Prasanth making it 2-0. For Odisha, Nikhil’s strike came too late in the night.
Kerala Blasters 2 (Alvaro Vazquez 62, K. Prasanth 85) bt Odisha FC 1 (Nikhil Raj 90+4).