On paper, it was a dead rubber. On the field, the action could not have been livelier. Odisha FC and SC East Bengal’s campaigns had been over a while back, with nothing but pride left to play for.
Before match No 108 of the Indian Super League season, the latter had scored 17 goals in 19 matches and the former had scored 19 in 19 matches. In their 20th match, they produced a 6-5 goal fest. A total of 11 goals were scored on the night, making it the highest-scoring match in the history of the tournament.
Doubles from two Indian youngsters Paul Ramfangzauva (49’, 66’) and Jerry Mawihmingthanga (51’, 67’) enabled Odisha to end the season on a high, with S Lalhrezuala (33’) and Diego Mauricio (69’) chipping in. Goals from Anthony Pilkington (24’), Aaron Joshua Holloway (60’, 90’), Jeje Lalpekhlua (74’) and an own goal from Ravi Kumar (37’) made up East Bengal’s tally.
Of course, the game was littered with defensive mistakes that showed why these two teams finished where they did but it made for fantastic end-to-end entertainment.