ISL: Late Romario strike helps FC Goa sign with Odisha

Odisha FC suffered a huge blow in their search for qualification for play-offs after they were held on Tuesday for a 1-1 draw by FC Goa in their Indian Super League match here.

Goals from Jonathas (61st, penalty) and a last minute equalizer from FC Goa striker Romario (90 + 5) meant that neither team would concede three points.

The result prevents Odisha from rising to fifth place in the standings, level on points with Bengaluru FC and Kerala Blasters FC. As far as FC Goa is concerned, the win goes without a win after five matches.

Many end-to-end things were observed in the early minutes by both teams. The Gaurs had a bigger share of the ball possession, but had trouble translating it into scoring opportunities.

Airan Cabrera got space behind Odisha’s defense in the first quarter of the hour, but eventually shot over the bar.

On the other hand, Liridon Krasniqi’s play was disheartening.

Arshdeep Singh also had to get a strong save from Edu Bedia right after the drink break. Princeton Rebello thought he had scored in the 40th minute until Thoiba Singh made a goal-saving block in the box.

Both teams lacked inspiration in attack, which led to no goals at halftime.

After the break, Cabrera demanded a penalty for a potential handball, but to no avail. The attacker got his shot past the keeper, but saw it blocked by the defender, apparently by hand.

However, right on the overmarket, the Kalinga Warriors got a penalty after Javier Hernandez was thrown into the box by Alberto Noguera.

Jonathas stepped up and sent his spot kick into the top left corner for the breakthrough goal.

A few minutes later, Jerry Mawihmingthanga came close to extending his lead from Odisha, but his chip hit the crossbar.

Derrick Pereira made several changes in the final stages of the match, putting pressure on the equalizer.

Four minutes were added for stops that saw more pressure from the Gaurs, in search of that elusive equalizer. It finally came through Romario who scored in the last minute of extra time through a header and thus shared the points between both sides.

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