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ISL 5: Resurgent Pune City register consecutive victories with 2-0 win over Goa


A resurgent FC Pune City romped to consecutive victories for the first time in this season of Indian Super League even as FC Goa seemed to have lost the plot following their third consecutive winless game – two of which have resulted in defeats. Pune beat Goa 2-0 at the Shri Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex on Tuesday.

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Marcelinho broke the deadlock in the 74th minute before an injury-time penalty from Marko Stankovic sealed the victory for Pune taking them two points above Kerala Blasters in the standings. Pune are seventh with 11 points from 12 matches, while Goa despite occupying the last playoffs spot,  has earned just one point from possible nine in their last three encounters and are on 17 from 10 games.

Goa’s goalless draw against Kolkata seemed to have taught other sides the tactic of keeping the flamboyant Gaurs attack silent and Pune coach Pradhyum Reddy used that to experience to the fullest blocking out the service to striker Ferran Corominas.

The visitors still dominated the ball possession but could not show it with goals and such sturdy was Pune’s defensive third that it took Goa 22 minutes to carve out their opening chance of the game. That was when Brandon Fernandes made a wide run on the right flank and forced Kamaljit Singh into making a crucial save.

Edu Bedia has been Goa’s most creative player throughout this season but was kept quiet by Adil Singh, who remained on the Spaniard’s toes throughout the night. The only time Bedia looked like scoring was in the dying minutes of the first half when his shot from 20-yards out hit the upright as both sides went into the break goalless.

Both the goalkeepers Kamaljit and Mohammad Nawaz of Goa were also excellent throughout the game keeping out several shots from the attacking tank of both sides.

The best save Nawaz made was to deny Marcelinho in the 71st minute when the Brazilians’ shot from outside the box seemed destined for the left low corner but the 18-year-old dived full length to keep the game limited to a barren streak.

There was, however, no denying Marcelinho, who scored three minutes later. Sarthak Golui found the Brazilian in space outside the penalty box and the forward finished with a fine curling shot into the top corner.

Goa could have equalised in the very next minute but Ahmed Jahouh’s effort after a goalmouth scramble hit the woodwork.

Mohammad Ali was then booked for holding Stankovic in the D and the referee pointed to the spot from which the Serbian complete the win.

Also read: Real Kashmir climb to third after hitting half a dozen past Shillong Lajong

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