ISL 2018-19: Erratic Delhi Dynamos pay the price for profligacy!

The Dynamos had a host of chances to finish off the tie but were not able to take full advantage and ultimately had to settle for a point...

For most of the 90 minutes on Wednesday at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium in New Delhi, it seemed like Miguel Angel Portugal would have an evening to forget on his return to his old stomping grounds. 

Delhi Dynamos looked to be on their way to the full quota of three points until second-half substitute Diego Carlos ensured Portugal's men would get something from the game. 

The 1-1 draw, in the end, was not a bad result for either team but Josep Gombau's Delhi Dynamos should have had the win, if not for some shoddy finishing on their part. 

Marcos Tebar, playing the anchor role in Delhi's midfield, had a solid outing against former team Pune City and kept things ticking over for Gombau's men. 

Pune City, without star man Marcelinho, looked nothing like the side that reached the play-offs last year though they did start the game well. Ashique Kuruniyan was impressive in the early exchanges, troubling Pritam Kotal with his runs down the left flank. 

However, the early promise he showed soon petered out as Delhi started to exert more control on the game. Pune City's full-backs were off their game as Lallianzuala Chhangte and Nandhakumar found a lot of freedom down the wings while Narayan Das had his moments too. 

The left-back forced Vishal Kaith into a save before Chhangte wriggled free of Nim Dorjee Tamang. He then set up Andrija Kaluderovic who fluffed his lines from close range. The Serbian striker had an ISL debut to forget as he would go on to miss another great opportunity in the second half after Nandhakumar found him inside the box after a blistering run down the right wing. 

Rana Gharami was the surprise package for Delhi. Gombau's decision to field him alongside Gianni Zuiverloon paid off as he scored a stunning long-ranger to hand them the lead while also putting in a good shift defensively. The goal, in itself, came out of nowhere and can only be termed a moment of brilliance. 

However, what did not pay off for Gombau was his decision to get involved in a touchline altercation with Marko Stankovic midway through the first half. For a manager looking to make an impression in a new league, picking a ball up and refusing to hand it over to an opposition player for a throw in was amateurish to say the least. 

Delhi Dynamos fans would also have been unconvinced by the nervy game their Spanish shotstopper Francisco Dorronsoro endured. He was calamitous in the first half but redeemed himself by making a strong sharp save off a Jonathan Vila volley in the second half. 

Diego Carlos Delhi Dynamos vs Pune City

Portugal's decision to send on Diego Carlos would pay off as the Brazilian linked up well with Emiliano Alfaro, who was isolated for large parts of the game, and smashed in an equaliser. 

It was a smooth start to the season for either team. Both Delhi and Pune were erratic but the former did enough to deserve all three points.

Though Delhi would rue the fact that appeals for a handball was turned down in stoppage time, the fault for not clinching three points is entirely on their abject finishing.