HAL started the game with a proper plan to hold the speedy Oil men. Xavier played from the flank and Satish Kumar (jr.) started with Fredrick as a striking duo.
Match progressed in a lively pace with Oil India bagging the first corner in the 4th minute of the match. A minute later, it was HAL’s turn from the other side. However, Jotin’s head from the corner went wide.
HAL kept the possession of the ball in the opponent's end, playing short passes, and then going for the kill. They got their first chance as early as 13th minute, Nigerian Fredrick received the final pass from a nice move, however, Fredrick’s feeble shot went outside the goal post. Fredrick’s striking partner, Sathish Kumar (jr) couldn’t capitalize from a defensive lapse in the 19th minute.
Oil India got a chance by Ricky Joy’s rare clumsy clearance in the 21st minute. Stopper Femi Adeola had no other option, but to come down heavily on the Oil India striker. The free-kick from the top-corner of the penalty box yielded no result for Oil India.
Unlucky to say the least, Oil India could have taken the lead in the 29th minute, Jayanta Basumatary’s powerful right-footed long ranger hit the left post; keeper Amar Deb was no where close to the ball.
HAL picked up their 1st goal after a minute from a corner. Skipper Rajendra Prasad took the flag-kick, wily Xavier VijayKumar headed the ball that was beyond the reach of the keeper.
HAL put up a spirited performance after the goal, with the striker duo combining well, ably supported by the mid-field.
After changing ends, HAL came out in a more organized manner and the 2nd goal was just the result of that discipline - Sathish Kumar (jr) scored after dribbling past 2 defenders.
Oil India had their share of chances, they did well to get the ball to the opponent’s end, but then it was the regular story of losing the plot and missing easy chances. The lacked the finishing abilities and were often clueless inside the penalty box area.
Meanwhile, Xavier scored his second goal in the 71st minute. Substitute for Oil India Prashanta Choudhary pulled one the 87th minute. But by then it was all over for Oil India.
Xavier, who scored a brace, talked to us after the match, he was happy in team’s performance, however, he was not satisfied by his own performance in the role of the winger. He hopes to better it and ready the don the new role for his team.
2 wins from 2 matches and today’s result must satisfy HAL coach Muralidharan. HAL played a far better game today, they excelled in all departments! They have scored 3, and should have scored another 3 today.
Malabar thrash Sesa
In another match played earlier today, Kerala outfit, Malabar United won convincingly against the academy team from Sesa, Goa. All the 3 goals were scored in the second-half.
The teams were at par in the first half, however, 2 quick goals in the early 2nd half dented the morale of the young Sesa guys, and then they failed to come back to the game.
Clifford Chukwama, who earlier coached I-league division 1 team Sporting Club de Goa, blamed experience (rather lack of it) for this result. “Two goals in quick succession did us in. Also, the penalty was not justified as my player made no body contact with the opponent player.” said Chukwama. Also added, “2 defeats from as many matches, had really made the task difficult for us”.
- Malabar United 3 (Loveday-53', Asif K-55 [penalty], and Firos K-70') Sesa Football Academy 0
- HAL 3 (30' and 71'-Xavier Vijaykumar, and Satish Kumar jnr.-53') Oil India 1 (Prasanta-87')
- Vasco Sports Club versus ONGC, 2 pm
- NISA, Manipur versus Mohammedan Sporting Club, 4 pm