10-man Gokulam Kerala pip Hyderabad FC in Durand Cup
Kalyani, September 16, 2021
Riding on Ghanian forward Rahim Osumanu's goal, defending champions Gokulam Kerala (GK) overcame Hyderabad FC 1-0 in a Group D encounter in the 130th Durand Cup here on Thursday,
Gokulam started the proceedings with very positive intent. They played an attacking game from the word go and created quite a few chances to score. Early on in the first half, they had the first major chance when Osumanu had the ball right in front of the Hyderabad goal but he could not put it past goalkeeper Lalbiakhlua Jongte.
A few minutes later, GK had another golden opportunity, courtesy of a beautiful cross by Osumanu but Emil Benny failed to score. Though Hyderabad had more of the ball, Gokulam had better chances at goal. Jongte did well to keep it goalless at half-time.
In the second half, Gokulam picked up from where they had left off and made an impact immediately. Jongte made a terrific save but Osumanu had the ball on the rebound. He made no mistake and broke the deadlock in the 46th minute.
The match took another interesting turn a minute later when GK's Emil Benny received his second yellow card and got his marching orders, leaving the Malabarians a man down.
A rejuvenated Hyderabad team went all guns blazing in the final 30 mins and played an attacking game. But GK goalkeeper Ajmal PA made sure to keep a clean sheet and win 3 points for his side.
Gokulam Kerala’s captain and Afghan national Sharif M Mohammad was adjudged the Man of the Match for his all-around effort.