New entrants Odisha FC bagged their first win of the Indian Super League (ISL) season with a dominant show against Mumbai City FC on Thursday. The Bhubaneshwar-based club, who had suffered two defeats in their two opening fixtures, bounced back in style as they thrashed Mumbai City FC 4-2 at the Mumbai Football Arena.
Goals from ex Bengaluru FC man Xisco Hernandez, Jerry Mawhmingthanga and a brace by Aridane Santana saw the away side score four, while Mohamed Larbi’s goal from the spot and Odisha keeper Dorronsoro’s own goal accounted for Mumbai’s two goals.
Mumbai coach Jorge Costa was forced to make a few changes to his starting XI that drew in Chennai with Souvik Chakrabarti suspended and Rowllin Borges injured. Winger Mohammed Rafique was called upon to play as the right-back in an all- Indian back-four. Odisha, on the other hand, had four changes as they hunted for their first win with the likes of Nandhakumar, Dorronsoro and Niang Diagne starting.
Hungry for their first win, Josep Gombau’s men attacked right from the onset and within five minutes, they got their reward. Catching on to a flicked ball, Xisco sped into the box down the right hand side, outwitted Pratik Chowdhary with a deft body-feint and then, just placed the ball past a hapless Amrinder Singh.
In the 21st minute, Santana doubled the lead for Odisha as Jerry latched on to a pass by Sarangi and played it back to the edge of the box. The star striker, who had by then made a late run into the box, slotted it into the far post from some 18 yards out. Things turned worse just before half-time as Jerry turned from feeder to scorer. The youngster did not have to do anything but tap from a couple of yards out after the ball had rebounded off the crossbar from a Nandhakumar shot.
After the break, Mumbai got an opportunity to reduce the deficit and forge a fightback when Dorronsor felled Kevyn inside the box. The referee rightfully pointed to the spot and Larbi converted without any hiccups. The goal charged the home team up as they attacked and attacked, trying to find a way back in the match. However, all their hopes were put to rest when Santana added his second in the 71st minute.
Mumbai would go on to get a consolation goal late on, when Bipin Singh’s innocuous grounded cross was turned into his own net by Dorronsoro but it was Odisha, rebranded and renewed, who went home with three points.