Match 8 of the Indian Super League (ISL) was truly eye-catching with FC Goa falling 1-3 to a Valskis-led Jamshedpur FC. The match was played at the GMC Athletic Stadium, Bambolim, Goa. Nerijus Valskis was at the double, ending a 9-match goalless drought. Jordan Murray later came on to add a third.
Earlier, Jamshedpur FC could only register a draw against SC East Bengal. However, this time the Men of Steel rose to the top of the table with a commanding win.
FC GOA 1-3 JAMSHEDPUR FC : THE GAME
Lithuanian forward Nerijus Valskis was the Hero of the Match and just one away from a perfect hat-trick. He scored his first with a left-footed low drive and then nodded on a pin-point freekick.
Substitute Jordan Murray, coming off the bench, added a third immediately. Notwithstanding, Airam Cabrera disallowed the Red Miners a clean sheet, following a clean finish to make it 1-3 in the 86th minute.
After a disappointing opening day loss, Juan Ferrando made a host of changes to his side. Jorge Ortiz was handed a start with Devendra Murgaonkar leading the charge. Airam Cabrera found himself on the bench. Reliance Foundation Young Champs Academy graduate Muhammed Nemil, back from his injury, was named in the lineup for the first time.
Scottish Premiership winner Greg Stewart registered his first start for Jamshedpur FC on Indian soil. With Eli Sabia dropped, Komal Thatal was named on the flank.
Thatal was off from the first whistle. Hailing from Sikkim, the forward picked out Jitendra inside the area with some of Stewart’s help. Not long after, he teased opposing defenders with dangerous plays, all within the initial 15 minutes. FC Goa chose to retain possession while Jamshedpur were better off with set pieces. A flat 4-4-2 from the Red Miners barred Goa from finding empty spaces to attack.
Jamshedpur ride on Valskis’ brace to sink Goa
After 40 minutes, Len Doungel was unable to hit back at his former team. Following a mislaid pass, the winger found himself though on goal. Initially, his shot was blocked by Dheeraj and then went on to drag the rebound wide. Valskis too was unsuccessful as Dheeraj was alert.
In the second period, FC Goa pressured Jamshedpur with a freekick. However, goalkeeper Rehenesh parried as he denied Alberto Noguera. Over at the other end, Valskis ended his goal drought with a low left-footed strike to put his team ahead.
Much more confident now, Valskis looked hungrier and was at it again. He doubled his tally and his team’s 10 minutes later. The Lithuanian climbed the highest in the area to nod home a curling Greg Stewart freekick, making it 2-0. Jordan Murray came in at the 80th minute mark and quickly made it 3-0 with his first touch.
Greg Stewart was another influential player on the pitch, humbling the FC Goa midfield with his quality. FC Goa gaffer Juan Ferrando called upon his bench multiple times but it proved insufficient.
There seemed to be no real endeavor at crafting a breakthrough as the Gaurs were disappointed yet again. They did manage to pull one back but were entirely dominated by the Red Miners.
The Gaurs will hope to turn things around in their upcoming game against Northeast United. Meanwhile, Jamshedpur will take on Hyderabad FC.
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