Sahal Abdul Samad scored the game’s only goal as the Kerala Blasters beat Jamshedpur 1-0 in the first leg of the Indian Super League (ISL) semi-finals at the PJN Stadium in Margao, Goa, on Friday. Sahal Abdul Samad’s goal in the first half was enough for the Kerala Blasters to overtake Jamshedpur in the first leg of the Indian Super League semi-finals, snapping Jamshedpur’s seven-game winning streak. Sahal’s goal in the first half puts the Kerala Blasters ahead halfway through, with Jamshedpur were looking to bounce back in the second leg. Kerala clearly dominated the game and deserved to go into the break with a double lead in two matches. The loss may have caught Jamshedpur off guard in the last match as Jamshedpur reached the semi-finals after winning seven in a row. They beat Mumbai City 3-1 to secure their place in the semi-finals and beat Chennaiyin 3-0.
Jamshedpur FC won the Shield for the first time with 43 points in 20 league games and broke the league record. It has been a stellar season for Jamshedpur FC, and manager Owen Coyle would like to believe the win was a mistake. League Shield winners Jamshedpur FC started the attack when Daniel Chima Chukwu missed an excellent opportunity to draw first blood from close range shortly after Pronay Halder took over TP. League Shield winners Jamshedpur FC looked pale in first person, with Daniel Chima Chukwu missing two first-half golden chances and Greg Stewart also missing his usual trick in the final third.
Jamshedpur failed to get past centre-back pairing Ruiva Hormipam and Marko Leskovic in the first leg and did better in the second leg. Ruiva Hormipam was great for the Kerala Blasters in the first leg, and along with Marko Leskovich, they never let Jamshedpur play as freely as they usually do in the last third.
Kerala Blasters FC shared the honours with Jamshedpur FC on the night they drew 1-1 but played two defensive games in the best draw to beat League Shield winners 2-1 overall to reach their first final since 2016 of the year. Kerala Blasters opened the scoring in the 18th minute via Adrian Luna in the 18th minute, which put the tie in favour of Kerala. Still, Jamshedpur would not let it slip without trying to qualify for the Finals. Jamshedpur controlled the ball in the midfield nicely. They were aggressive throughout the game and made 300+ passes, taking ten shots on goals from which only six were on target. Jamshedpur equalled the score in the early period of the second half with a goal from Pronay Halder (50th min), which put pressure on Kerala.
Kerala Blasters will now wait for their opponents for the finals, as the second semi-final takes place with Hyderabad taking on Mohun Bagan in the second leg after winning the first leg.