Odisha FC rally to down Hyderabad FC; make the semi-finals

Odisha FC rally to down Hyderabad FC; make the semi-finals

Odisha FC registered a come-from-behind 2-1 win over Hyderabad FC at the Payyanad Stadium in Manjeri, to progress to the Hero Super Cup 2023 semi-finals, on Monday, April 17.

Second-half goals from Diego Mauricio and Victor Rodriguez were enough to overcome an early deficit as Odisha FC ensured they remained unbeaten in Group B and finished with seven points in their kitty with two victories and one draw. Javier Siverio put Hyderabad FC in the lead early in the encounter.

Initially, the Manolo Marquez-coached Hyderabad FC looked more composed than their rivals as they held their defensive unit together. A couple of early attacks on the Odisha goal gave them the confidence to make further inroads.

Eventually, Hyderabad found the breakthrough in the 11th minute when a curling cross from Borja Herrera Gonzalez was met by Javier Siverio to make it 1-0. The Spanish forward leaped high in the air to head it into the top right corner, leaving Amrinder Singh glued to his spot.

Siverio, and Abdul Rabeeh kept troubling the Odisha FC defence with their advance runs and got a few attempts on target too. On the other hand, Diego Mauricio combined with Nandha Kumar as the duo worked together to find the equaliser. 

Mauricio, in particular, had a couple of glorious chances to pull the scores level. But the Brazilian star’s grounders in the 27th and 34th minutes were comfortably saved by Gurmeet Singh.

After switching sides, Siverio had an opportunity to double his side’s lead in the 53rd minute. Sahil Tavora delivered an amazing aerial cross inside the box and an unmarked Siverio had just the goalkeeper at his disposal. But the 25-year-old missed the ball completely.

Mauricio levelled the score for Odisha in the 55th minute. The Odisha footballer took advantage of a melee inside the box following a corner kick and finally found the back of the net.

But Hyderabad kept it going and produced some great passages of play. They came tantalisingly close to taking the lead again on more than one occasion, but couldn’t quite find the net. On one such occasion in the 73rd minute, Siverio once again had the opportunity to get onto the scoresheet. But the Spaniard couldn’t keep his header on target off a Joel Chianese cross. 

 Odisha, in the meantime, kept playing on the counter and kept the Hyderabad defence busy with constant movement in the final third.

Ultimately, their resilience paid dividends as Diego Mauricio and Victor Rodriguez combined to make it 2-1. This time, it was Rodriguez, who was left unmarked inside the box, as he made no mistake in tapping home Mauricio’s low cross from the right flank.

In the dying moments of the game, the referee gave Gurmeet Singh the marching orders. The Hyderabad goalkeeper tripped Mauricio just outside the box, denying a clear goalscoring opportunity.

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