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ISL 2021-22: FC Goa bags home spoiler after a 1-1 draw against NorthEast United

Goa and NorthEast canceled each other out in the tight contest

ISL 2021-22: FC Goa bags home spoiler after a 1-1 draw against NorthEast United

The Bridge Desk

Updated: 14 Jan 2022 4:22 PM GMT

Hernan Santana's delightful free-kick failed to hand NorthEast United FC a win as they were held to a 1-1 draw by FC Goa in the Indian Super League at the Athletic Stadium in Bambolim on Friday.

NEUFC's Hernan Santana celebrates with team mate Imran Khan after scoring a goal in the first half of the match against FCG; (Image via ISL)

Santana curled in a superb free-kick in just the second minute of the game but Airan Cabrera's goal in the 39th minute helped Goa draw level. There were no goals in the second half, meaning Goa moved up a rung to eighth place having 13 points from 11 games while NorthEast United remained 10th with nine points from 11 games.

NorthEast United were off to a flying start courtesy of Santana's individual brilliance. The 31-year old Spaniard curled in a delectable free-kick at the near post leaving Dheeraj Moirangthem with no chance as the ball pinged in off the crossbar.

It was a frantic start to the game and just the early push NorthEast United needed. Goa tried to settle down by playing more passes in midfield but NorthEast were not ready to rest on the slender lead as Deshorn Brown missed the target after beating two defenders.

FC Goa's Airan Cabrera celebrates with teammates after scoring an equalizer in the first half of the match against NEUFC; (Image via ISL)

Goa relied on the excellent Jorge Ortiz to deliver the goods and the Spaniard got past Provat Lakra to send a teasing ball inside the box but Mirshad Michu was alert to avert the danger at the right time. NorthEast looked in fine touch when Brown and Suhair Vadakkepeedika combined for the latter to see his effort deflect off a few Goa shirts for a corner.

Goa slowly started growing into the game and got the equalizer moments before the halftime whistle when Cabrera nodded in an Alberto Noguera corner with no one marking him.

In the second period, Goa looked the more threatening side with Ortiz and Cabrera combining brilliantly to keep NorthEast United defence on tenterhooks. There were chances few and far between for the Highlanders but Goa could not make the most of their attacking display as they had to share the spoils in the end with their rivals.

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