The Marina Machans secured a quarterfinal spot on Friday night.
Mumbai City FC were defeated by Chennaiyin FC 2-0 in the first pre-quarterfinals of the Hero Super Cup. The former two-time Indian Super League winners scored twice just before the half-time to seal the victory and enter the quarterfinals. CK Vineeth scored the opener through a marvellous long-range shot while Jeje Lalpekhlua finished a quick play involving him, Vineeth and Thoi Singh.
Below are the ratings for the Indian players involved in the game.
Karanjit Singh (GK) – 6.0
Alen Deory didn’t trouble Karanjit and the goalkeeper had nothing much to do. He did have to be alert to stop the occasional long-range attempts directed towards him from the boots of Bipin, Raynier and Rafique, but except for that, he had nothing much to do.
Issac Vanmalsawma – 5.0
Issac wasn’t fitting well to the plans of his coach, and hence Gregory was forced to replace for Thoi Singh, someone who performed amicably better with the changed shape of the team. It wasn’t the fault of the midfielder, although there’s always a question whether the player could have perform better.
Jeje Lalpekhlua – 7.5
Jeje was left isolated for most of the game. The striker looked set to continue keeping blanks against the Mumbai defence, but then happened a move that was as beautiful as it could get in the Indian football. The forward work tirelessly without the ball and deserves every credit that will go his way after the game.
CK Vineeth – 7.0
Vineeth was playing on the right flank. But the former Bengaluru FC and Kerela Blasters forward looked more interested in the centre of the park. The player scored what could well go on to be the best goal of the tournament. He was also involved in the goal that doubled the goal for his side.
Anirudh Thapa – 5.5
Anirudh Thapa was marked out of the game well by the Mumbai midfield. The Indian starlet failed to create any magic for the Mariana Machans and was fortunate to have seen his teammates rise to the occasion. It was an off day at work for the 20-year-old.
Tondonba Singh – 6.5
Apart from heading away a couple of crosses from some very dangerous positions, Tondonba wasn’t a man having to deal with a number of troubles. He had to control the initial burst of Bipin and managed to do it well. He even covered for the Brazilian Mailson Alves when the defender decided to go and try his luck with the ball up front.
Thoi Singh – 7.5
Thoi changed the complexion of the game after he entered the pitch. The team that looked like running out of ideas in the first 45 minutes itself, got the trickery and pace of Thoi, scoring twice just before the half-time break.
Dhanpal Ganesh – 6.0
Dhanpal Ganesh is the man Chennaiyin have been missing all this while. The midfielder was the star of the John Gregory’s side last season but missed out the entire season this time due to an injury. Ganesh played the final half hour of the game to get some playing minutes before the all-important quarterfinals.
Mumbai City FC
Raynier Fernandes – 6.5
Raynier had his moments in the game, like the one where he laid down a beautiful pass from the gaps between the defence line of Chennaiyin for Deory. But those moments were far too lesser impactful than what Mumbai wished for. Raynier, playing as the strait between the front-line and the midfield, connected them very ably. His pressing-game was on point, with him winning balls for the Islanders on numerous occasions. But as and when Mumbai stopped pressing higher, he started fading out and finally was replaced.
Vignesh Dakshinamurthy – 5.0
Playing Vignesh as a left-back is a poor decision, and Jorge Costa should have learnt it in the ISL itself. Vignesh had a horrendous outing against NorthEast in the 0-2 defeat of the Islanders, and the youngster was replaced in the first half for Md Rafique. Yet he was given the opportunity by the Mumbai gaffer Costa, and now it is certain that Vignesh won’t be featuring in the back-line anymore. The U-23 Indian international did improve, contributing a lot in the offence but defensively he was as poor as was against the Highlanders.
Souvik Chakrabarti – 6.0
It was a quiet game for Souvik, and the former Jamshedpur FC man was only noticed when he received the bookings for the rash challenge. Souvik had not much trouble on his flanks with Jeje and co. operating from the central channels and offensively he was non-existent with Md Rafique contributing more than the fullback.
Milan Singh – 6.0
Milan had a good command on the midfield, partnering the veteran Rafique well, acting as one of the two pivots for the Jorge Costa managed side. Milan brought his A-game in the first half, intercepting all that tried to go past him and breaking down even the little attacking moves that the Mariana Machans tried to develop in the first 40 minutes.
Bipin Singh – 6.5
Bipin Singh’s first 20 minutes of the game reminded the Islanders of his ATK days. Bipin was sharp, quick, had good control on the ball, tried to be as direct as possible and brave enough to take on the likes of Mailson. But then the former ATK man reminded of the Islanders of what he has been throughout the season, useless in front, offering little in the attack.
Anwar Ali – 5.5
Anwar Ali has to follow the footsteps of the former Mumbai City FC defender Mehrajuddin Wadoo. He needs to retire. He didn’t play the best game of his season and was a spectator when Jeje doubled the Chennaiyin FC lead. Mumbai needs the other Anwar Ali, while this one can be a mentor for him.
Alen Deory – 5.5
Can Alen play full 90 minutes of the game with the same intensity? In his two most recent starts for his side, he has shown that he can’t. Alen ran out of gas for the second straight game in which he started, and looked helpless throughout the second half, failing to meet a single cross. Maybe Jorge Costa should think again about his high pressing style of play?
Sanju Pradhan – 6.0
Sanju played in an uncharacteristic position, and for all the flakes that he is thrown upon by the critics of his game, the Indian midfielder didn’t look out of the game. In fact, Sanju matched the creativity of Bipin during the first 20 minutes of the game, and may well have surpassed Bipin’s numbers after the former ATK player decided to go into hibernation mode.
Md Rafique – 7.0
Rafique helped his side down the right, in the middle of the park and even up front, playing and acting like the captain of the side. The Indian international was played alongside Milan Singh and he marked Anirudh Thapa out of the game. The youngster was shadowed by the Islander’s midfield maestro throughout their stay on the pitch.
Ravi Kumar – 5.0
Did Mumbai miss Amrinder Singh? Yes. Could Ravi stop any of the two goals? Perhaps not. The two goals that Ravi let go into the back of the net were two exceptional moments and pieces of brilliance. Any goalkeeper could have let the two go in, especially the second one after the Barcelona-esque gameplay.
Pranjal Bhumij – 7.0
Pranjal Bhumij was the star player in the attack after the youngster came on to help his side overcome the two-goal deficit. But the 20-year-old didn’t seem to be enough to break the sturdy Chennaiyin defence. And that indeed frustrated the 20-year-old forward, who vented it out all on Dhanpal Ganesh, elbowing him down, almost getting his marching orders.
Sanjay Balmuchu – 5.0
Sanjay replaced Raynier after the former Mohun Bagan midfielder started losing the impact, but the defender was brought in when the damage was already done. The former Jamshedpur FC man kept his side into the game preventing any further goals from the breaks.
Joyner Lourenco – 6.5
Joyner brought the defence back into the shape after Vignesh had left few gaps opened up down the left wing. The otherwise centre-back did better while defending than the youngster counterpart, and also made sure that the overlapping runs were made from his flank for his side.