NorthEast United piped FC Goa into the second position in the points table following a frustrating barren draw against Jamshedpur FC at the Tata Sports Complex in Jamshedpur on Saturday.
The Highlanders after their third draw in nine matches are on 18 points, four behind table leaders Bengaluru FC, who have also played a game less, and lead Goa by one point. Jamshedpur FC remained in the fourth position with 15 points from 10 matches.
— Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) December 1, 2018
Both teams played to their safety but the first real opportunity of the encounter fell for Pablo Morgado, who after chesting a Memo flick run in the space between the Robert Lalthlamuana and Mislav Komorski but placed his shot out of the target.
After that initial chance, Jamshedpur failed to take control of the match and instead it was the visitors, who dominated the proceedings with Rowlin Borges finding himself in scoring positions at least thrice from set-pieces in the opening half. But the tall midfielder failed to make most of it.
Such disappointing was the finishing of the season’s second and fourth highest goal-scoring teams – Jamshedpur are second with 18 goals, NorthEast have found the net 14 times – that the fixture’s first shot on target arrived in the 58th minute, almost an hour after it had started. Federico Gallego’s shot was, however, straight at home custodian Subrata Paul and did little to trouble him.
Just a minute later, Memo’s attempted volley from a corner seemed destined for the top net, but Gallego slid in to block and keep his side in the game.
The next sparkling moment of the match came in the 77th minute when Bartholomew Ogbeche – the season’s joint-top scorer – breezed past Memo and Tiri before squaring up the ball for an unmarked Gallego, who failed to produce a shot on time letting another close opportunity go by.
Ogbeche came with another late surge in the dying minutes of the game after Tiri clumsily gave the ball away but the former PSG striker’s shot was blocked, resulting in the league’s fifth goalless draw this season and surprisingly thrice in four days.