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Odisha FC 2-0 Chennaiyin FC: 3 Reasons why the hosts won comfortably | ISL 2019-20

EXPERT COLUMNIST
Top 5 / Top 10
Published Jan 06, 2020
Jan 06, 2020 IST

Odisha scripted a comfortable victory
Odisha scripted a comfortable victory

Odisha FC cruised past Chennaiyin FC 2-0 on a slightly dodgy pitch at the Kalinga Stadium to move to within a point of Mumbai City FC, who sit fourth. The win also meant that the hosts picked up their second consecutive victory at home, before they prepare to welcome the Islanders on the 11th of January.

The game began with both sides looking to come to grips with the conditions on offer. And, though the pair failed to settle into any proper rhythm, there were a flurry of chances just near the 20-minute mark.

However, it wasn’t until the 37th minute that the net was bulged when Jerry Mawihmingthanga capitalized on some slack defending to slot the ball into the back of the net.

Six minutes later, Vinit Rai conjured a sensational strike from the edge of the box to double the hosts’ tally. The visitors tried to get back into the encounter after the break but weren’t able to create enough openings to trouble Odisha’s rear-guard.

Here is a look at the three reasons why the home side won.


#3 Odisha dominate the middle third

Vinit scored the second goal for Odisha FC
Vinit scored the second goal for Odisha FC

Odisha began the encounter with Marcos Tebar and Vinit acting as the defensive midfield combination whereas Xisco Hernandez functioned as the No.10. Thus, on paper, the hosts seemed to boast a triumvirate capable of controlling the game and also creating enough chances in the offensive third. And, that is exactly how the narrative transpired as the trio put in accomplished displays in the centre of the park.

Tebar and Vinit were brilliant as they carried out their defensive tasks with aplomb. The latter made 6 clearances, 5 successful tackles, 3 blocks and 1 interception.

The Spaniard, meanwhile, dominated the middle third and set the tempo of the match to perfection. He displayed metronomic precision while pinging the ball from side to side and ended the encounter with 98 touches, 58 completed passes, 4 successful tackles, 5 interceptions and most importantly, 12 clearances.

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Xisco, on the other hand, acted as the ideal link between the midfield and attack and was a handful for the Chennaiyin defence throughout the contest. He created 3 chances, had 53 touches of the ball and also, drew 3 fouls.

Additionally, he fulfilled his defensive duties as he tracked back diligently and effected 2 clearances, 1 interception and popped up with a brace of blocks.

Thus, courtesy the efficient display of their midfield trio, Odisha had ensured that the visitors didn’t establish a foothold in the game. And, while Chennaiyin enjoyed much more of the ball in the second period, they were largely left to feed off scraps, thereby emphasizing the colossal performances of Tebar, Vinit and Xisco. 

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