An amazing free kick by Romaric gave NorthEast United a crucial 1-0 win against Pune City in the Hero Indian Super League on Monday at Guwahati.
The Highlanders were on the verge of an exit after going six matches without a win and four losses, but Romaric threw them a lifeline in the 81st minute, scoring the only goal of the game to give his side the full 3 points.
The visitors looked threatening during the first half but couldn’t quite get the results and soon started to look tired, not surprisingly following their 4-3 victory over Delhi Dynamos just 4 days previously.
Three yellow cards were issued before the break to Romaric, Jonatan Lucca and Mohamed Sissoko, the latter could have easily been a red card after he physically picked up Velez and threw him to the ground.
The eventual winner came from nowhere, after the hosts won a free kick just outside the box and Romaric used his left foot to curl the ball into the top corner of the net, resulting in NorthEast moving into 6th spot on the ISL ladder.
On Wednesday Mumbai FC outplayed defending champions Chennaiyin FC 2-0 at the Andheri Sports Complex, to book a place in the final four for the first time in 2 years
The match lacked pace and rhythm from both sides, not helped by the frequency of fouls that disrupted the flow. Chenniayin were in a ‘must win’ position yet their play was without the much needed urgency to secure a win.
Mumbai were able to take advantage of having most of the possession in the 32nd minute after Sunil Chhetri unselfishly squared the ball to Matias Defederico who had a clear shot on goal and put his side ahead.
Krisztian Vadocz doubled the lead on the hour mark. Chhetri had played a long cross towards Diego Forlan who then found Vadocz at the edge of the box and the Hungarian smashed it past Karanjit Singh.
The result has seen Chennaiyin slip further away from a place in the top four.