Jamshedpur FC were held to a 1-1 draw at their first home game against ATK on Sunday at the JRD Tata Stadium. Ferrando replaced Raju Gaikwad and Bikash Jairu with Robin Gurung and Pratik Chawdhury for this match while Coppell decided to rest Uche, owing to the hamstring injury as Balwant looked after the attack for ATK.
Jamshedpur began the match with the typical 4-2-3-1 formation Ferrando usually follows, and the team enjoyed significant possession from the beginning, playing the ball more and more forward and forcing ATK to lay back. ATK, starting the match with a 4-4-2 formation, made an attempt to attack very occasionally, with the 2 attackers efficiently marked almost throughout the game, Tiri constantly sticking his head out with aerial clearances while Arques did a fantastic job working throughout the field, pulling the ball out of defence and supplying the ball constantly to Soosairaj who would do pretty well to feed balls to Cahill and Cidoncha, with the earlier still not living up to the performance he was expected of.
ATK played a much more physical game against a much more tactical Jamshedpur, resulting in a higher number free kicks from scoring positions and consequentially Jamshedpur FC broke the deadlock with Cidoncha finding the back of the net in the 34th minute through a freekick.
Jamshedpur FC’s Approach:
Jamshedpur had a very disciplined defence with a proper back four maintaining the line throughout the match. The plan was clear: Mark the 2 strikers strictly, with Tiri free, marking zonally as well as very animated in aerial clearances. When the two strikers’ movement was restricted, ATK gradually walked into the trap of bringing in a sole striker, who was obstructed easily as well.
As far as attack is concerned, Jamshedpur FC dominated possession, pressing the away team and Arques playing as a midfield general, carrying the ball right from the defence up to the other half of the midfield, supplying it to Soosairaj on the left, who tried to feed the aerial balls to Cidoncha and Cahill. The same plot was used on the right as well with Jairu playing the No.11 role.
ATK played a much more defensive game, or to be honest, a much more boring game. Their play had flashes of Egypt’s approach to World Cup matches in Russia: Park the Bus. The travelling team hardly tested the Jamshedpur FC keeper, with an exception to the corner kick from Lanzarote. While Ferrando’s men continuously attacked with short passes, penetrating the defence, Jamshedpur could easily have had a higher lead if they could have been a bit more accurate.
ATK tried coming up with counter attacks, but Jamshedpur FC’s back four along with Memo made sure Subhasish wasn’t tested very frequently. ATK played almost all their football in the midfield with back passes here and there. It was actually a demonstration of Coppell’s approach, similar to what Jamshedpur played last year.
Subhasish, the Jamshedpur FC goalkeeper who remained almost untested in the 1st half faced a stunner from Lanzarote in the dying seconds of the 1st half, as the ball sneaked into the goal, touching his hands. The first half ended with both teams square.
In the second half, both teams tried bringing in more firepower with Jamshedpur bringing in Passi and Morgado as well as Calvo for Cahill to play Cidoncha up front and Calvo playing as the attacking midfielder, while ATK brought in Jayesh Rane for Thatal. Jamshedpur continuously brought in shots, but lack of accuracy didn’t test the opposition much.
Overall, the match was well dominated by Jamshedpur FC, but could not materialise the attacks in the next half, as both teams ultimately settled for one point each, with Jamshedpur going over FC Goa to 3rd place as ATK still linger in the bottom half at 7th position.