Mourtada Fall stars with brace as 5-star Goa prove too good for Mumbai

A mesmerising attacking performance from FC Goa saw them virtually blow Mumbai City FC out of their Hero Indian Super League play-off tie after a 5-1 win in the first leg at the Mumbai Football Arena here on Saturday.

Though Mumbai took the lead through Rafael Bastos, an opportunistic strike from Jackichand Singh (31’) and a header from Mourtada Fall (39’) handed Goa the lead before half-time. Ferran Corominas (51’), Fall (58’) and Brandon Fernandes (82’) scored three more goals for Goa in the second half.

This is the first time that a team has won an away play-off tie in the ISL and Mumbai City’s hopes of reaching the final for the first time looks to be all but over. The first-half got off to a racy start with Mumbai displaying plenty of intent in their game. Goa’s defence had a few nervy moments with Arnold Issoko causing them trouble from the right wing.

Mumbai did not have to wait long to take the lead. Issoko was the architect, twisting and turning past Mandar Rao Desai before picking out Bastos’ run at the far post in the 20th minute. The Brazilian, left unmarked, turned it in first-time past a hapless Naveen Kumar.

The goal jolted Goa into action and they equalised just past the half an hour mark. Corominas found some space to shoot, but his effort was saved by goalkeeper Amrinder Singh but a lurking Jackichand pounced on the rebound. In the 39th minute, the tie turned on its head as a low corner from Brandon took a touch off Coro and found Fall who stooped down and sent a header home to hand Goa the lead.

Mumbai thought they had an equaliser just before half-time when Bastos saw a shot spilt by custodian Naveen Kumar. Sougou reacted fast and turned it home  but was deemed to be offside. It all went further downhill for Mumbai after the break as Goa turned on the style and pumped three more goals past Amrinder.

Six minutes into the half, Coro was left unmarked by a poor Mumbai defence to head home Jackichand’s cross at the far post. Fall added another when he got his head to a corner, yet again, ahead of Mumbai defenders. The Gaurs went on to pepper the Mumbai goal with a flurry of shots following that goal and only a combination of Amrinder and the woodwork saved Mumbai from going further behind.

But the fifth goal did come in the 82nd minute when Hugo Boumous slipped in Brandon who slid a shot in past Amrinder to pile a heap of misery on Mumbai City FC.

– Courtesy ISL Media
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