The win also helped Ivan Vukomanvic’s men complete a league double over the Islanders this season.

Kerala Blasters thumped Mumbai City FC 3-1 to move closer to securing a playoffs spot in Indian Super League 2021-22. Sahal Abdul Samad opened the scoring when he dribbled past Lalengmawia and Mourtada Fall, before taking a shot from outside the box to put Kerala Blasters ahead. Alvaro Vazquez scored a brace for the Blasters, showing his poacher’s instincts. With the win, Kerala now have one foot in the playoffs.

The victory take Kerala Blasters into fourth place, they are now two points clear of Mumbai City with one game remaining. The defending champions who were at fourth before the game started, dropped a position down and now must beat Hyderabad FC in their final game while hoping Kerala Blasters lose to FC Goa in their final encounter. If the Islanders fail to defeat the Nizams, Ivan Vukomanovic’s men will automatically go through to the semi-finals.

Here are the player ratings from the match.

Kerala Blasters (by Shivam Tiwari)

Prabhsukhan Singh Gill – 6.0

Prabhsukhan Singh Gill failed to save Diego Mauricio’s penalty. The attempt on goal by the Brazilian forward was the only shot on goal he faced. The Indian goalkeeper was booked in the 71st minute.

Ruivah Hormipam – 6.0

Hormipam gave away the penalty while contesting for an aerial ball with Diego Mauricio. He was unfortunate as it was a soft penalty. Ruivah had seven clearances and created a chance in the game.

Sandeep Singh – 8.0

Sandeep Singh showed never seen before attacking attributes of his game. Mumbai City forwards targetted Sandeep’s flank and the full-back replied by pinning them back in their defensive third. He had two shots and three crosses.

Marko Leskovic – 7.0

Marko Leskovic spent a lot of time with the ball at his feet. The centre-back was crucial for Kerala Blasters with his ability to distribute the ball. He had 14% of his team’s passes and 9% of ball touches in the game.

Sanjeev Stalin – 6.5

Sanjeev Stalin is usually an attacking threat in the game. However, with Sandeep Singh advancing on his flanks, Stalin decided to stay back and keep the numbers on his team’s side in their defensive third. He had two clearances in the game.

Lalthathanga Khawlhring – 7.0

With Mumbai City dominating possession, Lalthathanga Khawlhring and Co. didn’t see much of the ball. So, the Indian midfielder decided to keep the opposition’s midfielders away from the Kerala Blasters’ defence. He finished the game with three tackles.

Ayush Adhikari – 7.0

Ayush Adhikari continued to fill in for Jeakson Singh and impressed the Kerala Blasters fans. He showed a great work-ethic and tackling ability. He finished the game with three fouls suffered and six tackles.

Sahal Abdul Samad – 8.0

Sahal scored the first goal of the game. The icebreaker came after the Kerala Blasters forward intercepted Brad Inman’s clearance and dribbled past a couple of Mumbai City players before releasing the shot. He finished the game with 79% passing accuracy.

Adrian Luna – 7.5

Adrian Luna was crucial at switching the play for the Blasters whenever Mumbai City crowded the left half of the Kerala midfield. He had a couple of shot-creating actions with switches, one of which was for Sandeep Singh’s best effort of the night.

Alvaro Vazquez – 9.0

Alvaro Vazquez showed the poacher’s ability he has in the game. He won himself a penalty before scoring it. Vazquez also pounced on a loose ball after Nawaz failed to control it to score Kerala’s third goal of the game.

Jorge Diaz – 8.5

Diaz may not have scored today, but he was at his creative best. He created what could have been a wonder goal from Alvaro Vazquez had his volley been on target. The Argentinean forward created four chances in the game.


Rahul KP – N/A

Rahul didn’t get enough time to spend on the ball. He had six attempted passes in his short stay on the pitch.

Prasanth Karuthadathkuni – N/A

Ivan Vukomanovic brought Prasanth into the game in the 86th minute.

Chencho Gyletshen – N/A

Chencho took the field in the 90th minute.

Mumbai City FC (By Riddhiman Sarkar)

Mohammad Nawaz – 5.0

Sliced a bad back-pass from Mourtada Fall, as it fell on a plate for Vazquez to volley home. Kept out a few more chances with three saves in total, but could not do anything about either of Kerala’s goals.

Rahul Bheke – 5.5

Rather weak showing from the experienced defender, as he looked clueless on multiple occasions and picked up a yellow card in the first half. Won only one battle each among four ground duels and three aerial duels.

Mourtada Fall – 5.0

Gave away a penalty as he took Vazquez’s bait and lunged in only to miss the ball completely, as the Spaniard spun away masterfully and went to ground.

The captain was nowhere near his best, as he continued his dismal performance with a horrible back-pass to Nawaz, which Vazquez capitalized on. Won 10 out of 13 aerial duels. 

Mehtab Singh – 6.0

Began the game with a needless sliding tackle, which was uncharacteristic of the otherwise composed youngster. Won only two out of four ground duels, as he made two clearances and blocked one shot.

Mandar Rao Dessai- 5.5

Came up too short too many times, as he squandered a few chances in building up the attack. Gave way to Vikram Pratap Singh at half-time, having lost possession seven times, as Des Buckingham decided to opt for more firepower. 

Lalengmawia – 6.5

Isolated way too often as he was the only natural No. 6 in the lineup. Won eight out of his 12 ground duels and completed 80% of his passes. 

Cassinho – 6.5

Played some good football from a deeper role alongside Apuia, but was expectedly not as effective. Got 67 touches on the ball and made one key pass, as he was subbed off for Raynier Fernandes in the 84th minute.

Bipin Singh – 6.0 

Started on the right flank for only the second time, but could not be as clinical as he was against SC East Bengal. Out of his seven crosses, only one was successful and that capped off a quiet evening for the winger.

Brad Inman – 6.0

Played in his favoured No. 10 role but was not exactly decisive, as he had an early call for a penalty controversially denied.  Made four key passes, but none of them were converted. 

Lallianzuala Chhangte – 6.5

Frustration got to the lightning-quick winger, as he made a few reckless challenges and entered the referee’s book in the second half.

Was the Islanders’ brightest spark in attack, as he executed a perfect Cruyff turn on one instance and looked to tease Kerala Blasters’ defence with a delivery for Mourtada Fall on another. Completed 90% of his attempted passes.

Igor Angulo – 6.0

Could not time his runs as efficiently as he normally does as he was flagged offside five times. Went off in the 58th minute for Diego Mauricio, as he had only attempted one shot on goal. 


Diego Mauricio – 7.0

Scored his second penalty in an Islanders shirt, as he reduced the arrears to two for Mumbai City. Impressive as he got only five touches on the ball after coming on.

Raynier Fernandes – 6.0

12 touches on the ball and seven completed passes out of nine were not enough for the Indian playmaker to make an impact.

Vikram Pratap Singh – 6.5

Had sufficient time to make his mark, but found himself stranded in between organized ranks of Kerala Blasters players, as his only shot on target was blocked. Direct running also proved to be ineffective, as he completed only one take-on out of three.

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