FC Goa crashed to a second successive defeat in the third season of the Indian Super League (ISL). Their opponents, FC Pune City, too came into the match having lost their opening fixture. However, new manager Antonio Habas, was able to secure his first victory (and points), in his side’s away match, FC Goa vs Pune City.
FC Goa started in a 4-4-2 formation, with Reinaldo Olivieira coming in for the unimpressive Richarlyson Barbosa. The Goans lined-up in with the midfield shaped as a diamond.
The visitors preferred a 3-5-2 formation with marquee player Mohamed Sissoko in his trademark deep-lying-midfield position. Dharmaraj Ravanan joined Eduardo Ferreira and former India international, Gouramangi Singh in the three man defence while Tato and Zurdo were started upfront.
Former Atletico de Kolkata manager, Habas, saw his side take the lead courtesy another former Atletico man, midfielder Arata Izumi. Jonatan Lucca took a shot from 30 yards which was saved by veteran goalkeeper, Laxmikant Kattimani but Izumi was present tap into the back of the net.
Goa hit back soon. In the thirty third minute, Kattimani’s goal kick found Jofre, who passed to Rafael Coelho. Coelho sidestepped Gourmangi with ease and shot past, Pune shotstopper, Edel.
There were a couple of surprising decisions to end the half. Goa were awarded a free-kick for Sissoko’s tackle on Trindade, which wasn’t a foul. The resulting free-kick yielded a corner, which Eduardo handled inside the box. However, Goa were denied a penalty as the referee blew his whistle for half-time.
Diring the interval, Zico switched to a 3-5-2 formation as he brought on Romeo Fernandes for Fulganco Cardozo. Fernandes and Mandar served as the two wing-backs.
Both teams had opportunities to take the lead. Coelho, Romeo and Anibal were the ones who ended up missing chances. The matched seemed to be petering out to a draw.
However, there was late drama in store. Senegal striker, Momar Ndoye, had replaced Jesús Rodríguez Tato in the 69th minute. He beat Goa defender Lucio to Jonatan Lucca’s pass ans scored the winner in the 90th minute.
There was no way back for the shell shocked Goans. The hosts were left to rue multiple missed opportunities. On the other hand, Pune coach Habas would be glad for a crucial 3 points.