I-League 2: MH Oranje FC’s decisive away game ends in a draw against United SC

A late goal from Sanchit Singh gave MH Oranje FC a breath of fresh life with the draw ensuring the relegation battle against United SC continues till the final day of the game

In a crucial match at the bottom of the table, United SC hosted MH Oranje FC at Kalyani Stadium, with both teams tied at 11 points. They were each surviving their way out. making it a high-stakes encounter. United SC took an early lead, but MH Oranje FC clawed back in the second half, eventually drawing level. Sanchit Singh, the go-to player for MH Oranje FC, scored a key late-game goal to secure the draw. The result didn’t change the positions of either team, with United SC staying ahead due to a better goal difference. The outcome sets the stage for a tense final day as both teams continue their fight for survival in the league.

In their previous fixtures, both MH Oranje FC and United SC delivered impressive performances, pulling off surprising victories against teams with strong promotion prospects to the I-League. At COE Kharghar, MH Oranje FC dominated Sporting Goa with a convincing 3-0 win. On the other hand, United SC hosted Bengaluru United in an 8-goal thriller, ultimately prevailing in a dramatic and high-scoring match. These unexpected outcomes showcased the unpredictable and competitive nature of the league, setting the stage for a nail-biting conclusion to the season.

The home team United SC began the game with a burst of energy, applying constant pressure on MH Oranje FC. Their aggressive approach saw them repeatedly sending balls into the box, but the steadfast defense of MH Oranje FC, led by goalkeeper Mukund Ravi Kumar, held firm, successfully repelling every attack. In the 13th minute, MH Oranje FC initiated a counter-attack with an exquisite interplay between Zothanpuia and Aimar Adam. Aimar delivered a beautiful blind through pass to Prathmesh Kasare, which managed to breach the defence of United Sc. Unfortunately, Prathmesh’s cross missed its mark, allowing United SC to regain control.

United SC were looking vicious inside the final third early in the game. In the 20th minute, United SC’s persistent efforts bore fruit as Sahil Harijan opened the scoring. It all started with Sahil Harijan with a swift switch of play over Manish Siddha to Dilip Orawn on the right flank. Dilip whipped in a low cross towards the second post, but Mukund Ravi Kumar managed to intercept it, deflecting the ball back into play. The deflection, however, landed right at Sahil Harijan’s feet, and he calmly tapped it in with a one-touch finish into the left corner. This goal propelled Sahil Harijan to the top of the scoring charts with 9 goals, making him the leading goal scorer of the campaign.

The visitors, MH Oranje FC, were determined to get back into the game. In the 36th minute, they launched a promising attack that almost leveled the score. Advait Rai’s initial clearance sent Surendra Singh down the left flank, and he delivered an audacious through ball to Sanchit Singh, who took on two defenders before aiming for the bottom-right corner. However, United SC’s goalkeeper Sourav Sammantha made a sensational save with his outstretched hands, denying what seemed like a certain goal.United SC responded valiantly. Sahil Harijan with a quick whip from left flank inside the box . Mukund intruded in his way with an outstretched save. denying the possible threat towards the goal.

The first half ended with United SC holding onto their one-goal lead. Despite MH Oranje FC’s efforts to level the score, United SC’s goalkeeper Sourav Sammantha made a crucial block to maintain their advantage. As the teams headed to the locker room, MH Oranje FC had their work cut out for them to turn the game around in the second half.

MH Oranje FC came out strong at the beginning of the second half, determined to level the score. Just a minute into the half, Sanchit Singh nearly brought them back into the game. Nitesh Monde, an experienced midfielder, delivered a perfect floating ball into the box. Manish Siddha redirected it to Sanchit Singh, but he missed a crucial chance by not planting his foot correctly, sending the ball wide of the target.

In a turn of events, a referee’s controversial decision put MH Oranje FC at a disadvantage. Dilip Orawn’s shot was blocked by Noel Dias in the box, but the referee called for a penalty, though the ball appeared to hit his hip. This incident encapsulates the challenges MH Oranje FC has faced during the campaign. However, Mukund Ravi Kumar made a crucial save, diving to his left to stop Souvik’s penalty shot, demonstrating his reliability under pressure.

“Mukund has been a standout performer throughout the season, displaying resilience and making some remarkable saves despite occasionally conceding goals. In the 60th minute, United SC’s Amanath Wasaki launched a swift counterattack, driving the ball toward the goal. He sent a well-placed shot to the top right corner, but Mukund made an exceptional save to deny the goal, keeping MH Oranje FC in the game.

MH Oranje FC maintained high intensity as they launched a series of attacks in the latter part of the second half. In the 75th minute, substitute Sahil Bhokare came close to scoring with a daring shot at goal. His strike from the left flank soared towards the top right corner, but United SC goalkeeper Sourav made an impressive save, denying the visitors a potential goal.

MH Oranje FC finally found the back of the net in the 81st minute after creating several scoring opportunities. This goal was almost a replica to the missed chance in the start of second half. The play involved the same trio of players: Nitesh Monde sent a floated set-piece delivery into the box, which Manish Siddha expertly headed toward the target man Sanchit. Sanchit Singh completed the move with a solid half-volley finish in the bottom left corner. This goal made Sanchit Singh the second-highest goal scorer in the tournament, just behind United SC’s Sahil Harijan, who has 9 goals. The match ended with both teams sharing a point.

The match at Kalyani Stadium was played with great intensity under the hot sun. MH Oranje FC overcame a first-half deficit to secure a point by scoring an equalizer in the second half. Sanchit Singh, who has been in excellent form, scored his 8th goal of the campaign to help his team draw level. United SC may feel disappointed after failing to maintain their early lead, provided bythe young hurricane Sahil Harijan.

The outcome leaves everything on the line for the final day of the I-League 2 season. United SC will host Sporting Club De Goa at Kalyani Stadium, while MH Oranje FC will compete in the Mumbai Derby. Given Kenkre FC’s fight for survival, the final matchday promises high stakes, with everything to play for.

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