ISL: Mumbai City is still looking for the first home victory after the draw with Kerala Blasters
MUMBAI: A week that began with a vibrant note for the city of Mumbai ended with the islanders having to settle for a 1-1 draw with Kerala Blasters in the Mumbai Football Arena Thursday.
Only seven days before, Mumbai City, which never managed to pass the semifinal stage of the Indian Super League and a team that is still figuring out how to fill its 8,000-seat stadium for the capacity of its home games, gained international relevance thanks to the agreement it signed with the City Football Group, famous owner of the current Premier League champion Manchester City.
However, in the field, Jorge Costa The team still cannot celebrate the arrival of its new majority owners with a victory.
Upon entering this game, both Kerala and Mumbai had failed to win any of their previous five games. Mumbai's only victory so far remains the 1-0 victory they achieved against the same opponents in their first game this season.
In the 75th minute, the visitors took a significant step to avenge that loss when a man named Messi struck with his left foot. You have read that correctly!
Having lost his two previous games here, Mumbai City secured a different ending this time as Amine Chermiti tied with his fourth goal of the season.
It was Messi Bouli, the dynamic Cameroonian striker of Kerala Blasters, who delivered the first truly explosive moment of the game with a scandalous ability in the 25th minute. Upon receiving the ball from Seityasen Singh, Jessel Carneiro sent a cross from the left that Messi controlled with a skilful left-handed touch with his back to the goal, preparing an attempt above the head that required Amrinder Singh to make a great stop.
While he stood up the vast contingent of Kerala fans dressed in yellow, and it was a movement invented by the kind of genius that the most Cameroonian homonym routinely produces, domestic support was not in the mood to appreciate the effort as songs of 'sasta Messi' rang from the West Coast Brigade.
The last stages of the first half saw Mumbai begin to grow in confidence with Rowllin Borges a fundamental figure emerges in the midfield.
However, the defensive problems that have seen the islanders drop crucial points once again seemed to cost them when Carneiro, after seeing that Amrinder had avoided his own effort, did well to regain possession and move on to Messi whose attack had enough power to beat the Mumbai Goalkeeper.
Tunisian striker Chermiti, however, once again demonstrated the valuable purchase he has made, making sure he was in the right place to jump on a ball spilled by TP Rehenesh to win a point to Mumbai.
Both sides remain out of the top four in the standings, with Mumbai taking sixth place, two places ahead of Eelco Schattorie The men.