A truly astonishing sight was on display for the audience at the Kalinga Stadium at Bhubaneswar, as an unprecedented six players were sent off over the course of two fiery halves of football.
Head Coach Coppell made three changes to the side that beat I-League Champions Minerva Punjab FC in the last round of the Super Cup, with a notable exclusion being goalkeeper Sanjiban Ghosh, whose heroics in the last match filled many of the Jamshedpur FC fans with joy. Bikash Jairu and Farukh Choudhury were the other players replaced, with Jerry Mawia and debutant Sairuat Kima filling in their spots.
FC Goa kicked off the game and started off with offensive intent, while the Jamshedpur FC defence rose to the challenge and managed to thwart some close attempts at goal. Subrata Paul showed his class with a fine save from a Mandar Rao Dessai shot in the sixth minute that kept the score-line level and ensured we could build on our game without falling behind.
We were able to threaten FC Goa’s goal ourselves shortly after, as Yumnam Raju intercepted a ball in the box and set up Kervens Belfort for a run on goal. Kattimani was up to the challenge and prevented Belfort from getting on the score-sheet.
As we approached half-time, both teams missed golden opportunities to score, as Ferran Corominas of FC Goa missed a close-range tap-in into an unguarded goal shortly after Belfort missed out on burying a header from a corner-kick. Brandon Fernandes was able to get FC Goa on top in the 34th minute as he blasted the ball into the roof of the net after picking up Subrata’s clearance.
Shortly after the goal, FC Goa had another wonderful opportunity but Subrata Paul came to the rescue as he thwarted the weak tap in away. But there was confusion as Subrata’s clearance was picked up by Brandon even though the ball crossed the line and the FC Goa player smashed it in. The referee took a few minutes to disallow the goal after consulting with the linesman as Jamshedpur FC players protested the initial decision.
This led to remarkable turn of events at half-time ensued as an altercation away from the cameras caused both teams to have three of their players sent-off, forcing us to continue the game without Subrata, Anas Edathodika and Belfort.
With 8 men on the pitch, we had very little opportunity to build on the effective defensive work of the first half and Memo’s foul on Corominas in the box further condemned us to a 0-2 deficit. We held on for some more time but an offensive onslaught from FC Goa saw us concede goals from Manvir Singh and Hugo Boumous to take the deficit to 0-5.
Farukh Choudury managed to carry the ball up the field and lay a ball off to Ashim Biswas, who scored a late consolation goal for us in extra time.
The result means Jamshedpur FC are out of the Hero Super Cup which thereby concludes their 2017-18 season.