Delhi Dynamos brought an end to their Hero Indian Super League Season 4 campaign with a 2-2 draw against FC Pune City at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi on Friday. Kalu Uche’s brace was cancelled out by Emiliano Alfaro’s two goals as the two teams shared the spoils in a game marred by poor refereeing.
Head Coach Miguel Angel Portugal opted to hand Simranjeet Singh his first start of the season as he came in to replace Pritam Kotal. Gabriel Cichero and Timothy Munmun returned to the starting XI while Arnab Das Sharma started on goal in place of Xabier Irureta.
The Lions started the game in ascendancy and were rewarded inside the first 10 minutes when Lallianzuala Chhangte was brought down by young Ashique Kuriyan. Uche stepped upto take the spot kick and made no mistake to hand Dynamos the lead.
Minutes later though, Pune were awarded a penalty of their own as Simranjeet was adjudged to have committed a foul from the corner. The replays though showed that the defender made no real contact on the Pune attacker. Pune were on level terms in the 15th minute as Alfaro sent Arnab the wrong way to make it 1-1.
Delhi had the majority of the possession and continued to press forward. Simranjeet came the closest to handing Lions the lead as he cut in from the right to release an outstanding shot from his left foot, which was kept out only by the crossbar.
Delhi though regained their lead 10 minutes from half time. Nandhakumar took advantage of a slip in the Pune defense to win the ball back and place it perfectly for Uche who tapped in to get his second of the night and 13th of the season.
Delhi should have had a 3rd goal just minutes later when Manuel Arana hit a thunderbolt but his goal was ruled out because Uche had handled the ball in the build-up.
It was Pune who started the second half strongly with Alfaro leading from the front but Sajid and Cichero made sure that the Pune attack was not given much space.
Chhangte then had a glorious chance to double Delhi’s advantage but his header from Arana’s cross came off the post.
Pune though made the most of Delhi’s missed chances and were once again awarded a spot kick with 10 minutes left on the clock as Sajid brought down Alfaro. The replays showed that the striker was fouled outside the box.
Alfaro slotted home the penalty to score his second of the night and bring Pune back on level terms.