Hyderabad FC and NorthEast United failed to break the deadlock in a hard-fought contest at the Tilak Maidan in Vasco on Sunday. Neither team created enough clear chances to find the back of the net as the much-awaited contest ended in 0-0 draw
The result lifted Hyderabad into the 3rd place, level on points with NorthEast United in fourth and a point above FC Goa in fifth, who have a game in hand.
Manolo Marquez’s side dominated possession right from kick-off as the Highlanders were happy to sit back and soak up pressure, to try and hit HFC on the break. But apart from a couple of half chances at either end, there was no real moment that broke the deadlock before the break.
Chinglensana Singh and Odei Onaindia stood tall to everything thrown at them by the visitors at the back. But the likes of Fran Sandaza, Aridane Santana and Halicharan Narzary failed to link-up and find the right pass to test Subhasish Roy on goal at the other end.
Akash Mishra’s battle with Ninthoinganba Meetei produced the most exciting moments in that half but not much changed even after the break.
A powerful run from Mishra opened NorthEast United’s defense, ten minutes into the second half but a poor effort from the full-back meant that Hyderabad could not make inroads in the attacking half.
The likes of Liston Colaco, Roland Alberg and Sahil Tavora added a bit of fresh legs that helped Hyderabad win a couple of dangerous free-kicks at the edge of the box but Manolo’s men did not make the most of those and had to settle for a point from this tie.
Liston’s effort from outside the box late in the game, at the end of a dazzling run from the half-way line, along with Laxmikant Kattimani’s quick feet to snuff out a through ball from Federico Gallego minutes before the final whistle, added some excitement to the fag-end of the game. However, neither team had the cutting edge on the night, as they played out a goalless draw.
The result also gave HFC their sixth clean-sheet of the season, their fourth since the turn of the year. Hyderabad have also extended their unbeaten streak in the league to eight games, which is their longest ever.
Hyderabad FC are back in action when they take on SC East Bengal at the Tilak Maidan in Vasco on Friday, the 12th of February.