Chennaiyin FC-Kerala Blasters Fc match in progress.© AFP
Vincy Barretto’s second-half strike helped Chennaiyin FC draw Kerala Blasters 1-1 and snap their southern rivals’ five-match winning streak in the Indian Super League here on Monday. Sahal Abdul Samad had put the Blasters in front in the 23rd minute before Barreto returned to score against his former club with an equaliser in the 48th minute. Kerala Blasters, however, stretched their unbeaten run to six matches to move to fourth position, ahead of Odisha FC on goal difference and just a point drift off ATK Mohun Bagan.
Inside a minute, Adrian Luna tried to lift a free kick over the keeper from the left flank, but it was palmed over the bar by Debjit Majumder.
Luna replicated the shot he attempted in the first minute from a long-range free kick.
This time a dipping and swerving effort came straight at the keeper from the central part of the pitch before it was palmed over the bar again in the 21st minute.
Midway through the first half, Kaliuzhnyi spotted Samad’s run and played a sublime through ball into the path of the winger.
Majumder came off his line in an effort to close the angle for Samad, but the 25-year-old cleverly dinked it over the charging keeper to score his third goal of the season.
Three minutes into the second half, half-time substitute Ali was picked out in the box by an inch-perfect ball from Vanspaul.
The striker’s first-time volley was parried straight into the path of Barretto by Prabhsukhan Gill. From close range, the midfielder smashed it home against his former club.
The Blasters will return home to host Odisha FC on Monday.
Chennaiyin FC remained in seventh, now four points off the final playoff spot.
The Marina Machans will travel to the west coast to face Mumbai City FC on Saturday.
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