Thursday Jan 26, 2023

Odisha and Chennaiyin Lose Chance For ISL Playoffs

Chennaiyin and Odisha End Up in a Draw in the ISL

Playoffs seem to be a distant possibility for both Chennaiyin FC and Odisha FC, with their recent match ending in a draw. Before the game, their chances for entering the playoffs in the Indian Super League were not great to begin with. Now, both teams, though technically still in the running, may find it impossible to qualify for the playoffs even with their next matches. The 2-2 draw had both teams with two goals but to no fruition, as both remain on the lower rank of the ISL where Odisha stands seventh and Chennaiyin on the eighth.

Chennaiyin was the first to score courtesy of Rahim Ali, but Odisha removed their lead with Javi Hernandez. Jonathas Cristian gave Odisha its second goal in the second half. Nerijus Valskis, however, found the equaliser and secured the draw.

Chennaiyin and Odisha End Up in a Draw in the ISL

Despite their uneventful run in the past few games, Chennaiyin managed to show a flash of their improvement under Sabir Pasha in their match against Odisha, taking the lead within two minutes of the first half. Rahim Ali took advantage of Nerijus Valskis’ free-kick that rebounded off Odisha’s wall and found its way to Odisha’s net.

Chennaiyin managed to consistently apply pressure at least for the initial 15 minutes until Javi Hernandez scored the equaliser by the 18th minute. Jonathas Cristian assisted Javi with the Spanish duo manoeuvring past Chennaiyin’s defences until Javi secured the goal from outside the box. 

Chennaiyin continued to try and win back the lead. Ariel Broysiuk sent the ball flying from quite the distance from the box, but the attempt was for naught as the ball flew over the bar and missed. The same went for his second attempt closer to halftime. 

Chennaiyin and Odisha End Up in a Draw in the ISL

Odisha continued to take advantage of Chennaiyin’s crumbling defence in the second half, with Jonathas attempting a goal at the 49th minute only to be denied by Debjit Majumder. Jonathas’ second attempt, however, hit the net of Chennaiyin by the 51st minute, compensating for the earlier hiccup after a clumsy pass between Rodas and Javi. Javi attempted to score the goal but was blocked, and the loose ball ended up to an unmarked Jonathas, who then secured the goal. 

With Odisha in the lead, Chennaiyin went hard to find an equaliser, and Nerijus Valskis found it for them with the help of Rahim Ali, sealing the game in a draw. After eleven matches, this marked Valskis’ first goal. 

Though Odisha and Chennaiyin no longer qualify for the playoffs, they are still expected to match up against the others in their upcoming games. Odisha will play against Bengaluru on 21 February and Chennaiyin against Jamshedpur on the 20th.

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Jeremy Nero

Nero Fulgar has been writing professionally for the past five years, delving into technical and creative content, as well as literary works. He has a degree in creative writing from U.P. Visayas and has published several works in the Philippines and Singapore. Other than writing, he has dabbled into editing and publishing fiction novels before moving on into writing-centred professions. Based in Dumaguete City, Philippines, he continues to write about everything that interests him, which includes igames, sports, politics, pop culture, art, and literature to name a few. You can reach Jeremy at [email protected]

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