Odisha FC defeated NorthEast United FC 2-1 in their eighth game of the ISL 2022-23 season today (December 2). It was also NorthEast United FC's eighth game of the season as well.
Odisha FC came into the game third in the points table, having won their previous game against Chennaiyin FC 3-2.
NorthEast United FC, meanwhile, came into the game placed 11th in the points table, losing their previous game 1-3 against Mumbai City FC.
The Highlanders are yet to register a point this season and the Kalinga Warriors have had one of the best starts in their history.
The game started with both sides trying to score an early goal. The game had its fair share of half-chances but neither side managed to break the deadlock.
Nanda Kumar finally broke the deadlock in the 25th minute when he placed a Diego Mauricio pass into an empty net from a handshaking distance.
Odisha FC tried hard to increase their lead but failed to do so. NorthEast United FC, meanwhile, failed to trouble Amrinder Singh, the Kalinga Warriors goalkeeper.
The scoreboard at halftime read 1-0 in favor of the hosts.
The visitors started the second half as the better side and managed to score the equalizer in the 60th minute. Substitute Rochharzela scored with his first touch of the game. Joe Zoherliana put a low cross into the box and Chhara made no mistake slotting it past Singh.
Odisha FC regained the lead again in the 78th minute when Jerry latched onto a rebound from the goalkeeper and made no mistake in slotting it into the goal.
The Highlanders tried hard to score the equalizer while the Kalinga Warriors made sure their lead didn't slip a second time.
The scoreboard at full-time read 2-1 in favor of Odisha FC.
With a win today, the Kalinga Warriors moved to second in the points table while the Highlanders remained at the bottom.
On that note, let's take a look at three things we learned from today's game
#3 NorthEast United FC suffered due to a lack of quality and individual errors
NorthEast United FC have created a record this season but not in a good way. The Highlanders have become the first side to lose all their opening eight games and have the worst start ever to an ISL season. They are yet to register a point yet this season.
A major reason for such a pathetic performance has been the lack of quality in their squad.
The second goal that NorthEast United FC conceded was a result of individual errors by the keeper Arindam Bhattacharya and players around him. Those turned out to be big errors as they decided the result of the game.
The Highlanders also lacked enough quality to impact the game and try to get at least a point from it.
There were numerous instances where the drawbacks due to lack of quality were on show today for NorthEast United FC.
#2 Odisha FC continue to win in difficult situations
Odisha FC have been the comeback kings this season. The Kalings Warriors have won multiple games this season after trailing. They have also managed to win a couple of games after being in a difficult situation.
In their last game, they managed to score in added time to secure victory against Chennaiyin FC.
Today they took the lead in the first half but conceded an equalizer in the 60th minute. The Highlanders were in the driver's seat at the time and were keeping hold of the ball well and trying to crave openings in the Odisha defense.
The Kalinga Warriors were not looking good at that moment. However, they werer resilient and managed to score the decisive goal in the 77th minute.
It is this trait of Odisha FC that has helped them this season in securing crucial wins in difficult situations.
#1 Jerry Mawihmingthanga's love affair with Odisha FC continues
Jerry joined Odisha FC in the 2019-20 season and has turned into one of the most valuable players for the Kalinga Warriors. The Mizo winger has always been one of the hot prospects in Indian football. After his move to the Kalinga Warriors, the young winger is showing his true potential.
Jerry has managed to score three goals already this season and provided an assist.
He has already equaled his goal tally from last season and we aren't even halfway into the league this season.
Joseph Gombau will hope his pocket-sized dynamite continues to come good in the upcoming games.