I-League: Mumbai FC hold ONGC to a draw

New Delhi, April 20 (IANS) An injury-time goal by Yusif Yakubu helped Mumbai FC hold ONGC to a 1-1 draw in an I-League match at the Ambedkar Stadium here Saturday.

Earlier, Yusa Katsumi had converted from the spot to put ONGC in the lead in the 18th minute. The match marked the end of ONGC’s home-matches here.

Courtesy the result, both teams moved to 31 points from 25 matches.

ONGC’s first chance came as early as the fifth minute. Kailash Patil’s deft turn caught rival defender Kamaljeet Kumar on the wrong foot and the former was brought down. But off the resultant free-kick, Yusa Katsumi’s try sailed inches over.

Mumbai FC came back strongly and forced a goalline clearance in the 12th minute — Justin Stephen’s header off a Nicolas Rodrigues corner was cleared off the line by Sachin Gawas.

ONGC surged ahead in the 18th minute. A David cross from the right was handled inside the box by Kamaljeet and Yusa gleefully converted from the spot to make it 1-0.

Mumbai FC’s best chance in the first-half came in the 31st minute. Peter Costa set up Evans Quao inside the box but his prompt shot was palmed away by ONGC goalkeeper Rehenesh.

Yusa, who till then, was creating problems for the Mumbai FC defenders, limped off in the 35th minute and was substituted by Naresh Aula. ONGC, thereafter, looked a bit wayward.

Changing over, Mumbai FC were the more dominant of the two. They did break into the rival box a number of times but the ONGC defenders managed to keep them in bay.

ONGC who had been pressing hard just couldn’t convert the chances which came their way. Substitute Kuttymani’s miss in the 88th minute summed up the day for them. With all the time in the world, Kuttymani’s header off a Peter Costa cross went over.

But late drama was in store for both the teams. The lanky Abhishek Yadav set up Yakubu in the clear and the veteran striker banged it in to the right of Rehenesh in the 94th minute to give his team a well deserved draw.

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