Connect with us

Indian Football

Analysis | Three Things We Learned: Kerala Blasters 1-1 Mumbai City


Aravind Unnikrishnan discusses three talking points about the Indian Super League game that finished Kerala Blasters 1-1 Mumbai City


Kerala Blasters stretched their winless streak to three games with the latest coming against a resilient Mumbai City F.C side at JHL stadium in Kochi. The home side put  forth a dominant performance, much to the delight of roaring crowd, but a 77th minute strike from Mumbai City FC’s Balwant Singh cancelled out the Mark Sifneos opener that kept them in lead until the closing stages.

Here are three things we learned from the match

Dominant display marred by wasted chances for Kerala Blasters

The Kerala fans could not have asked for more when Sifneos’ half-volley bulged the back of the net for the first time this season giving Kerala Blasters a one goal lead. Some scintillating attacking football in the opening minutes must have emanated a perception across the fans that their head coach Rene Meulensteen had finally seemed to get the best out of the squad. But it didn’t last for long as the likes of CK Vineeth, Jackichand Singh and Courage Pekuson squandered the chances created in the opening minutes.

In total Kerala Blasters had 18 shots on goal with three shots on target but it barely tells the whole story of their dominant display in first half. Nevertheless, it did extend some insight into the wasteful attack Rene Meulensteen needs to work on before their next match against F.C Goa.

Mark Sifneos, who bagged the opening goal had put up an impressive performance that would have definitely caught the watchful eye of Meulensteen. His darting runs across the frontline supporting the attack added a new dimension to Kerala’s attack which often created problems for the Mumbai defence. Kerala fans wouldn’t be surprised if the flashy attacker leads their attack in next match.

Berbatov thrives in new role

To see a winger controlling the game from a deeper central midfield position in his later years is not a new thing in football. Players like Ryan Giggs did this with ease into his 40’s while playing for English club Manchester United.

Good vision and ability to pick the right pass makes their transition all the more smooth, although the startling runs with the ball will remain a distant memory for them. But to see a striker in this position seems uncanny given the huge diversity of work one has to put in at the heart of midfield. Yet, the lanky Bulgarian continued to thrive in this position for the second straight match.

Dimitar Berbatov had started in a deeper midfield role and helped Kerala dominate the midfield with a disciplined performance. He orchestrated the attack with the composure of a proper midfielder.

The magic he could produce was clearly visible when Jackichand Singh saw himself in a one-on-one situation when he collected the long ball played forward by the 36-year-old forward from halfway line, though the Indian forward only managed to put it over the bar.

At 36, many thought he would be more of a slow-paced forward past his abilities. But Rene had other ideas that eventually saw the rejuvenated Berbatov thriving in a newer midfield role.

Hume can still play a part but in a new role

Iain Hume’s presence didn’t add much to their quest for the winning goal as he endured a difficult spell against Mumbai City F.C. His brief second half cameo lit up the crowd but the Canadian forward failed to latch on to the opportunity with a sluggish performance.

But his undisputed ability to turn around games can be a crucial asset for the Kerala Blasters in the long run. And he can do that by replacing Peksuson whose recent struggles can come as blessing in disguise for the Canadian forward.

Courage Pekuson currently has an upper-hand due to his energetic runs from midfield, but his sloppy through balls and erratic shots on goal could keep the door open for other players to prove their worth.

Hume is known for his short bursts through the center with the ball stuck to his feet. Also his ability to make accurate passes along with incredible finishes would make him a perfect fit to fill in for Pekuson.

With Vineeth banned for the next game, Hume might get a call to impress the boss after a slow start to his second stint at Kerala Blasters.


Read all our Indian Super League content here

Aravind Unnikrishnan

Aravind Unnikrishnan

Aravind is an avid Manchester United fan, but nothing beats his love for Kerala Blasters - his hometown club. He likes to analyze the tactical aspects of football and also a huge fan of Sir Alex Ferguson's attacking style.
Aravind Unnikrishnan

100 to Watch

Latest

Opinions2 days ago

Carlo Ancelotti at Napoli: Tactical Approach & Key Players

Charles Onwuakpa writes about Carlo Ancelotti and the approach he is likely to take on at Napoli. After three intense...

Scout Report2 days ago

Scout Report: Gonçalo Paciência | Eintracht’s exquisite forward

Jose Miguel Saraiva writes a detailed scout report about Eintracht Frankfurt’s striker, Gonçalo Paciência. For those who have been attentively observing...

Talent Radar4 days ago

Talent Radar: Liga MX’s 10 Young Players to Watch in 2018-19

Thomas Harrison writes about the 10 players to watch out for in the Liga MX for this coming season. Mexico...

Talent Radar4 days ago

20 Key Young Players to Watch from 20 La Liga Teams

Tom Canton takes a look at they key young players to watch from each of the 20 La Liga teams....

Scout Report4 days ago

Scout Report: Alphonso Davies | Speedy Canadian winger

Griffin O’Neill writes a detailed scout report about Alphonso Davies, the Vancouver Whitecaps winger. While many still believe that the...

Scout Report4 days ago

Scout Report: Diogo Gonçalves | Benfica’s tricky winger

Jose Miguel Saraiva writes a detailed scout report about Benfica’s tricky winger, Diogo Goncalves Having been deprived of their biggest...

Talent Radar5 days ago

Talent Radar: 5 breakthrough players to watch in the Bundesliga

Griffin O’Neill writes about 5 young players breaking through in the Bundesliga this season. Josh Sargent // 18 // Werder...

Talent Radar1 week ago

20 Key Young Players to Watch from 20 Premier League Teams

Andrew Thompson takes a look at the key young players to watch from each of the 20 Premier League teams...

Talent Radar2 weeks ago

Talent Radar: Argentina Superliga’s 10 Young Players to Watch in 2018-19

Tom Robinson briefs us about the 10 best young players to watch in the Argentine Superliga Argentina may have endured...

Talent Radar2 weeks ago

Talent Radar: 5 breakthrough players to watch in the Premier League

Hrishi Anand writes about 5 young players breaking through in the Premier League this season. As is the case every...

Opinions2 weeks ago

Unai Emery at Arsenal: Tactical Approach & Key Players

Hrishi Anand writes about what Arsenal fans and the Premier League can look forward to with the arrival of Unai...

Scout Report2 weeks ago

Scout Report: Benjamin Pavard | France’s Versatile Star

Jordan McElderry provides a scout report which analyses France and Stuttgart’s promising young defender, Benjamin Pavard In recent years, France...

Scout Report2 weeks ago

Scout Report: Diogo Dalot | Manchester United’s New Full-Back

Jose Miguel Saraiva provides a scout report which analyzes Manchester United’s new full-back, Diogo Dalot FC Porto’s achievements last season...

Scout Report2 weeks ago

Scout Report: Wendel | Sporting Club de Portugal’s new box-to-box diamond

Jose Miguel Saraiva writes a detailed scout report about Sporting Club de Portugal’s midfielder, Wendel. The 2018/19 pre-season has been...

Talent Radar1 month ago

World Cup 2018: Young Players Team of the Tournament

With an enthralling World Cup 2018 now completed, we an Outside of the Boot recognise the best young players under...

Talent Radar1 month ago

World Cup 2018: Talent Radar Top 5 Young Players

One of the most thrilling World Cup’s in memory came to an end with France lifting the Jules Rimet. While...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: Croatia 2-1 England AET | Tenacious Croatia punish England’s complacency

Charles Onwuakpa provides us with a tactical analysis of the World Cup semi final that ended Croatia 2-1 England. Croatia...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: France 1-0 Belgium | Set Piece Decides Game Dominated by Determined Defences

Siyang Xu provides us with a tactical analysis of the World Cup semi final that ended France 1-0 Belgium. France...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: Croatia 2-2 Russia | Modric and Rakitic make the difference

William Sinsky provides us with a tactical analysis of the World Cup quarter final that ended Croatia 2-2 Russia, with...

Tactical Analysis1 month ago

Tactical Analysis: Sweden 0-2 England | Patient England seal a win over cagey Sweden

Charles Onwuakpa writes a tactical analysis of the World Cup quarter final that ended Sweden 0-2 England. Sweden v England...

Talent Radar Award History

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this site and receive notifications of new posts by email.

More on Outside of the Boot