The Mumbai team's Afghan striker Sandjar Ahmadi scored the first half equaliser after C.K. Vineeth had put Eelco Schattorie's side in the lead
Mumbai FC were held to a 1-1 draw by United SC in an I-League encounter at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune.
C.K Vineeth drilled home the opener in the 16th minute, but Sandjar Ahmadi equalized in the 19th minute, with neither side able to add to their tally after that.
Khalid Jamil persevered with the same team that had got the better of Churchill Brothers in the last game.
Eelco Schattorie meanwhile made one change, with Mohd. Rafique being replaced by C.K Vineeth in the line-up.
United SC started the game stronger of the two, and egged on by their coach, who had to be content with a place in the stands just behind the technical area, they passed the ball with aplomb.
And they almost went ahead, when Ranti Martins powered his way into a scoring position, but saw his shot come back off the post.
However they did take the lead soon after, as C.K Vineeth showed great control and matched it with a finish, to put United SC ahead in the 16th minute. Khalid Jamil must have been particularly disappointed, as his team was caught out on the counter-attack after a corner.
But he was not despondent for long, as Sandjar Ahmadi leveled the score in the 19th minute, after Orok Essien Orok’s shot was palmed into his path by Sangram Mukherjee, with the Afghanistan International having an open goal to tap into.
United though, hit back impressively from that set-back, and put their mark on the game. Souvik Chakrabarty had a couple of good chances to help his side regain the lead, but he blazed over both the times, once after being set-up by Ranti and another time while attempting a volley.
Nicholas Rodrigues though, hit back with an audacious chip from just ahead of the half-line, which Sangram Mukherjee scrambled clear, before Haroon Amiri headed over, from another of Nicholas’ trademark deliveries into the box.
Essien then hit a powerful drive straight at Sangram, who was grateful to clutch on to the subsequent backpass by the defender.
Neither side however was able to regain the lead before half-time, going in tied at 1-1.
United SC started the second half on the front foot, with Brown pulling strings in midfield. The former ONGC man then had a shot from distance which was just off the target, but Kunal Sawant had it covered anyways.
Baldeep Singh then fluffed a huge opportunity for his side, when he got to the end of a CK Vineeth cross, but with the goal at his mercy and even Ranti asking for a pass, his poor first touch meant that the chance went begging.
Sandjar Ahmadi then had a great chance to put Mumbai ahead, but his first time shot was well off target.
However that was a rare aberration, as Eelco Schattorie’s side continued to have a monopoly of possession, with Mumbai FC only threatening intermittently from set-pieces.
The addition of Mohd. Rafique only added further bite to their attack and Souvik should have put United SC ahead when after some delightful build-up play, Deepak Mandal crossed for the midfielder, who unfortunately mis-timed his header and failed to get a touch on the ball.
Dane Pereira failed to hit the target on a rare foray forward for Mumbai FC, after a loose ball fell to him, kindly on the edge of United’s box.
Baldeep then missed a chance on the counter for Schattorie’s side, as they looked desperately for the winner their game deserved.
However neither side were able to get the vital goal to corner all three points, and the game ended in a 1-1 draw, the third time Mumbai FC have drawn at the Balewadi Stadium this season.
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