Millat F.C. come-out victorious against Kenkre F.C. under-19 by 4-1

As 90 minutes of footballing action came to an end, Millat Football Club had comprehensively beaten Kenkre under-19 by 4-1; Saalik Khan, Karan Khanna and Faran Butt got on the score-sheet for Millat F.C. as they completed a 4-goal haul in the first-45 minutes; on the other-side of the scoring chart was Kenkre under-19’s Nathan Fernandes, who was duly rewarded with a goal in the 66th minute of the match – the Kenkre number 27’s fine solo efforts in the second-half, largely contributed to the chances his side created, and the consolation strike midway through the second-half.

Kenkre under-19s were up against their compatriots from group ‘D’, Millat Football Club in the Mumbai District Football Association Super Division match on Friday afternoon, 29th January 2016, at Poinsur Gymkhana. The first-half of play began on a positive note as both sides were setup to attack; first, Millat Football Club and, then Kenkre under-19 attempted long shots on-goal with neither of shots coming-off as a ‘shot on target’.

Early-on in the opening 10 minutes of the game, both sides came-out of their respectively closets to entertain with open-attacking football, but it was Millat F.C. from the onset, who created a host of ‘certain’ goal-scoring chances leading to the opener in the 8th minute from Saalik Khan, who despatched Millat F.C. in the lead from the penalty-spot.

Kenkre under-19’s approach dramatically shifted in the aftermath of conceding the goal and just 2 minutes, later they stumbled to concede on the counterattack as Karan Khanna was found in-space, and the number 11 made no mistake in guiding the ball past the goalkeeper’s left-hand side. The goal added-up to mammoth task Kenkre under-19s were to overcome and a handball appeal waived-off in the 16th minute of the match added to Kenkre under-19’s anguish.

With the score at 2-0 inside 20 minutes, Kenkre under-19s didn’t have much to lose as they continued to pursue a fight-back into the game. The Red Lizards’ build-up play wasn’t according to their coach’s laid-out plans, and Akhil Kothari continuously asked his players to push-up and circulate the ball with more directness. Kenkre under-19’s misplaced a number of passes in midfield while they were in an attacking phase, which gave Millat F.C. ample chances on the break, which they seemed to threaten with at any given time.

Faran Butt’s goal in the top right-corner from a set-piece near the half-way line in the 29th minute was a timely reminder of the number 8’s capabilities. 2 minutes later, Kenkre under-19s received another shocker as they slipped to concede a fourth and a second-goal on the counter-attack from Karan Khanna, who lashed on to a loose-ball after the goalkeeper had saved a shot from a tight angle by Runal Bhatt. Though, the first-45 minutes came to a closure on a positive note with Kenkre under-19 finding a hatful of attempts on target in the closing moments of the first-half.

Coach Akhil Kothari changed his side’s system from a 4-4-2 to a 4-1-4-1 to add more purpose and stealth in attack in the second-half, but a determined and less fearful Millat F.C. were capable of holding-out Kenkre under-18s to succeed on a fine display of attacking resilience from the first-half. Kenkre under-18’s Nathan Fernandes alongside his teammates Athang Kanekar and Brent Fernandes, who came-on as a substitute in the first-half combined well throughout the second-half to create and convert any half chance.

Although, the most threatening the Red Lizards looked were when Nathan Fernandes solo-runs created a couple of chances down the right-side, first, number 27 scored in the 66th minute, second, in the 75th minute when Nathan Fernandes was unlucky to hit the right-hand post with a similar run, which bought him and his side a consolation goal.

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