ISL 2018-19: NorthEast United FC vs FC Goa - 5 Talking Points
NorthEast United FC started their ISL 2018-19 journey with a point against FC Goa in Guwahati today. Eelco Schattorie maintained his 100% record against Sergio Lobera as the game ended in a 2-2 stalemate.
The Highlanders went ahead in the 8th minute through a Federico Gallego freekick. Spanish striker Ferran Corominas scored a brace in the first half to give Goa the lead going into the lemon break.
Birthday boy Ogbeche grabbed the equalizer for NorthEast United FC to help the Highlanders secure a point from the game.
It was an exciting game with both sides playing an attacking brand of football.
On that note, let's take a look at the five talking points from the game.
#5 Nawaz showing two sides of the same coin on debut
Mohammad Nawaz was initially a part of the FIFA U-17 World Cup squad, but for reasons unknown, he was dropped at the last moment. FC Goa lapped up the opportunity to sign the young promising goalkeeper. No one expected Nawas to get a start this season with Goa having proven goalkeepers like Kattimani and Laldanmawia Ralte among their ranks.
Sergio Lobera though had other plans as he gave the young 18-year-old goalkeeper a start in their very first match of the 2018-19 ISL season against NorthEast United FC.
Nawaz committed two cardinal sins in the eighth minute when he failed to play to the whistle and handled the ball outside the box and then went on to gift the ball to the onrushing Federico Gallego took an early freekick and chipped Nawaz to score the opening goal of the game.
There was a lot of confusion in the Goa dugout and among the players as to what had happened, but in truth, Nawaz shouldn't have given the ball back to NEUFC especially after the referee had blown his whistle for a free kick while he was miles out of his line. The sins had been committed, and the deed was done.
Fast forward to the second half and it Nawaz again who pulled off two stunning saves one from a Nikhil Kadam shot from inside the box and another from a Rowllin Borges bullet from 25 yards out. Both of the shots were destined to go inside the goal, and yet the 18-year-old held his nerve to pull off two stunning acrobatic saves.
Nawaz's save on Rowlin's shot will be a contender for the save of the season for sure.
The young Manipuri Goalkeeper showed his good and bad side in the same game, and FC Goa will hope he keeps performing at his best while keeping the bad at bay.