TODAY -

ISL: Pune hold Kolkata to a 1-1 draw
Source: The Sangai Express / Agencies

Pune, November 29 2014 : International Atletico de Kolkata failed to take advantage of Chennaiyin FC's slip-up as they were held to a 1-1 draw by FC Pune City at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Stadium, Pune on Saturday evening.

Jakub Podany put the visitors into the lead in the 11th minute which was cancelled out by Kostas Katsouranis just before the end of the first session of play.

This result leaves Antonio Habas' side in the second spot with 17 points from 11 matches while Pune City with 13 points, same as NorthEast United and Delhi Dynamos stay seventh due to an inferior goal difference.

The home team made two changes to the line-up with Anupam Sarkar and Park Kwang-Il dropping onto the bench for Pritam Kotal and Davide Colomba.

Atletico de Kolkata, on the other hand, made five changes to the squad, with Kinshuk Debnath, Rakesh Masih, Jakub Podany, Aoula Edel and Mohammad Rafi coming into the team in place of Arnal Llibert, Subhasish Roy Chowdhury, Jofre Maheu, Lester Fernandez and the injured Ofense Nato.

Pune traded punches first with a neat steal off the Kolkata midfield resulting in Kostas springing clear and setting up Davide Colomba on the left.

The Italian raced clear but with Dudu in the middle, opted to drive across the face of goal which only missed the far post by a whisker as Bete in goal for Kolkata, dived in vain.

FC Pune City were dominant in possession but they conceded in the 11thminute against the run of play.

A long punt by Edel saw Kotal horribly misjudge the flight of the ball.

It fell kindly for Garcia whose calculated cross into the middle of the box found Podany, who rose above the defenders to head home into the top corner.

Colomba's side built up pressure through a series of corners, which they weren't able to get past the first man in most instances, as Atletico defended with aplomb.

Kolkata broke again and this time a series of one touch passes saw Garcia almost clear on goal, but somehow Cirillo got back with a trailing leg to thwart the away team's marquee to double their lead.

Around the half hour mark, Pune had their first shot on target courtesy of Kristian Vadocz, who's terrific volley after a failed clearance from the edge of the box saw the Hungarian smack at goal which Edel averting the danger.

In the 34th minute, utter pandemonium broke out in the Atletico box.

On the counterattack, Dudu picked out Pennant who put in a low cross that Kostas smacked straight at the keeper which was parried away.

It was game of pin-ball in the box as Vadocz and Colomba took shots which were stopped by diving defenders.

In the dying embers of the first half, FC Pune City had a corner which was poorly cleared as far as Cirillo.

A hopeful punt back into the box by him, directed towards Dudu saw Josemi headed it down for an unmarked Kostas, who smacked it into the far bottom corner, a shot which finally beat Edel.

Early in the second half, Pune City landed a free-kick on the right which Pennant brilliantly swung in.

The Atletico goalkeeper came to punch it clear but missed it, taking out his own player, Josemi instead.

Sadly enough for the home crowd, it missed all Pune players in the box as well, swinging away narrowly wide.

Pune were ramping up the pressure as another corner saw the ball just cleared away, but the break by Kolkata almost saw them hit the sucker punch as it was a three on three situation but the Pune defenders got back in time to see Rakesh Masih spear his shot wide.

Kostas was afforded room in the 54th minute to make a quick shot from the edge of the box, which the diving Edel managed to palm away for a corner.

Joaquim Abranches was brought on as the clock struck the hour mark as Colomba hoped to add more attack up front.

A dangerous over the top ball from the defense saw Fikru almost take advantage but Arindam charged straight to parry it away to safety.

Garcia showed his guile as he slipped through the grasp of two defenders, gliding in from the left, only to shoot wide of the far post.

Fikru took it upon himself to pull Kolkata into the lead and his brilliant powerful solo run saw him take the ball past two defenders but Wadoo cleared the danger for the home team.

Just two minutes before the end of regulation time, Abranches took a 25 yarder, but it missed narrowly wide.

Kolkata had the final chance of the game as Fikru earned his team a free-kick near the corner.

Jofre's delivery however was well dealt with by the Pune defense, who didn't have much to do in the second half.

The referee blew the final whistle soon after as Pune City and Colomba can only look at three points which should have been theirs slip through their fingers due to their wastefulness upfront.


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