Photo Credit: Odisha FC Twitter
ISL 2020-21 Mumbai City FC vs Odisha FC: Mumbai City FC register comfortable win over Odisha
Ogbeche and Borges registered themselves on the scoresheet for the Islanders.Mumbai City FC defeated Odisha FC by 2-0 at the GMC Bambolim Athletic Stadium in Goa on Sunday evening.
Goals from Nigerian Bartholomew Ogbeche and Indian international Rowllin Borges helped the Islanders to take away all three points from the contest.
The first chance of the game fell to Odisha when Borges brought down Nandhakumar Sekar near the box. The resulting free-kick was almost converted into a goal by Brazilian Diego Mauricio, whose shot just clipped the crossbar.
Mumbai City had the chance to get the lead in the 18th minute when Ahmed Jahouh played a long ball to Japanese midfielder Cy Goddard, but the latter shot it well above the crossbar.
The Islanders finally got the lead at the half-hour mark, when Shubaham Sarangi was found guilty of handling the ball from a Vignesh Dakshinamurthy's cross inside the box. The resulting penalty was calmly put into the back of the net by Ogbeche.
Four minutes later, Mourtada Fall's header found the back of the net as well but the referee adjudged it invalid as a foul against him was given following a collision with custodian Kamaljit Singh.
In the 43rd minute, Bipin Singh paced forward and crossed the ball to Hugo Boumous, but the Moroccan couldn't keep his shot on target. Just two minutes later, Rowllin Borges doubled the lead for the hosts when a Bipin Singh cross was perfect for the Goan to head it into the back of the net.
Stuart Baxter made a number of substitutions in the second half to respond but his team was unable to find any clear cut opportunity at the goal, as Mumbai City FC managed to keep the scoreline in their favour at the blow of the full-time whistle.
Mumbai City FC head coach Sergio Lobera was happy with the team's efforts in the second half, “During some periods of the game, the team felt like they were playing the way I wanted them to. But I believe the first half was not good for us because we can improve our performance. In the second half, we played very well. The most important thing is to keep following our style of play for the whole 90 minutes,” Lobera said during the post-match press conference.
The Islanders went to the top of the table with the win but the coach has his own priorities, "We need to put our focus on the game and not on the table. We need to prepare the games well. We don't need to think about the league table when we are playing the matches,” Lobera said.
Lobera further stressed that the team needs to keep playing this way throughout the season, "This win is important for us. We need to keep possession and have the ball. We need to be ambitious in the final third as well and score. This is very important for us. We have to keep the ball, play it forward and create more chances,” he said.
On switching between Ogbeche and le Fondre forward, he said, "Both are very good players and persons as well. They understand very well that first comes the team and then they come themselves. But this is my job. I am very happy with the attitude of the players,” Lobera said.
Meanwhile, Odisha FC head coach Stuart Baxter felt that the way his side played was satisfactory but the penalty changed the tide of the game, "I thought the first 15-20 minutes both teams had the same equation. After the penalty, there was a mismatch between the teams. We had three or four chances and we needed to score off them to get some pressure on Mumbai because at 2-0 there is not much pressure on Mumbai and they are a very technical team so they made it look like a mismatch,” said the Englishman
"We opened the game well but then we lost our momentum and our quality. Then the game got stretched out and when that happens, a team like Mumbai thrive. Throughout the game, the quality was not what it should be.”