ISL 2016: Pune City FC 1-1 Kerala Blasters - 5 Talking Points
The game was played at an impressive pace, and a lot of chances were created to keep both the goalkeepers busy throughout the game. Kerala Blasters, who had only one shot on target in the first three games of the ISL 2016 season, looked a changed side for the second game running and would be raring to re-write their journey of the first season when they reached the finals.
With the return of Antonio Lopez Habas in the next match, Pune City would be happy to have earned the critical point but the Stallions would also be ruing a lot of missed chances.
Here, we take a look at the five talking points from the game.
#1 Jonathan Lucca looks a shadow of himself
The attacking midfielder looks a shadow of what he was last season for FC Goa. The player, known for his incisive passing in the attacking third, hasn’t been doing much since the beginning of ISL 2016.
The Brazilian is drifting a lot towards the right and thus, is getting a little ineffective and lost. The former AS Roma youth player scored three goals and created two in a highly-effective campaign last season for the Zico-coached side, which reached the finals.
It is time Antonio Lopez Habas gives his creative master the much-needed speed and confidence around him, like Jofre and Mandar Rao last season, to become the lethal midfield orchestral link he formerly was. Jonathan wasted a lot of balls in the final third of the pitch, making ineffective runs down the right wing, cutting the space for Tato and only looked a little effective from set-pieces late into the second half.
It is inevitable to say that Tato should be tried at the No. 10 position in place of the Brazilian, who looks to have left his creativity at FC Goa. At times, even holding midfielder Bruno Arias looked more threatening than the No. 10 and the coach needs to give his player a little rest to refill his tank and hunger.