Chennaiyin FC blank NorthEast United FC to score first Indian Super League win
Chennaiyin FC registered their first win of the Indian Super League 2017-18 season as they comfortably beat NorthEast United FC 3-0.Updated: Nov 24, 2017 11:14 IST
An own goal from Abdul Hakku followed by a second goal by Brazilian Rafael Augusto and a late header from substitute Mohammed Rafi was enough to give John Gregory’s men all three points in their second ISL game of the season.
Chennaiyin FC started the game strongly, passing the ball around well in an effort to get an early lead.
However, they almost conceded a goal after a poor clearance from goalkeeper Karanjit Singh found NorthEast’s Seiminlen Doungel, whose shot went just over the bar.
NorthEast settled into the game eventually, but Chennaiyin’s early dominance was rewarded in the 11th minute when Raphael Augusto’s shot from distance was deflected into the net by Abdul Hakku.
Buoyed by the early goal, Chennaiyin continued to attack while NorthEast United looked for a way back into the game.
NorthEast United had possession but lack of penetration and tendency to lose possession at dangerous positions would come back to haunt them.
Chennaiyin doubled their lead in the 24th minute of the game after a good counter-attacking move was finished off by Raphael Augusto.
NorthEast United pushed forward throughout the half but Chennaiyin sat deep and defended well to ensure they had a two-goal lead going into the break.
The Highlanders came out with an attacking intent in the second half and nearly pulled one back from a Marcinho free-kick. However, the Brazilian’s effort sailed just over the bar.
Chennaiyin continued to sit deep and protect their two-goal lead. NorthEast, despite plenty of possession, failed to beat the home team’s defence.
With tempers fraying, both Marcinho and Danilo Cezario picked up bookings in the second half for NorthEast United FC.
John Gregory’s men continued to defend stoutly and bomb forward on the counter whenever they could. They finally put the game to bed within five minutes of the end as the third goal was created by two second-half substitutes.
Jaime Gavillan, who had earlier replaced Augusto, hit the bar from a close-range free-kick. The ball fell to Mohammed Rafi, who headed home with his first touch of the game to assure Chennaiyin of the three points.
NorthEast United will next face Delhi Dynamos in an away fixture on December 2, whilst Chennaiyin will travel to Pune to take on FC Pune City on December 3.
First Published: Nov 23, 2017 22:59 IST