ISL-9 leaders Hyderabad FC failed to extend their lead at the top of the league table, as they fell to a tough 0-1 defeat to Kerala Blasters in closely fought encounter at the GMC Athletic Stadium in Gachibowli on Saturday.
Dimitrios Diamantakos (18′) scored early in the game which proved to be the only goal on the night as the Kerala Blasters registered their third consecutive victory in the Indian Super League.
Manolo Marquez’s side made a strong start to the night, dominating possession and hardly giving the visitors a chance. But a spill from Anuj Kumar at the back left the goal open and Diamantakos made no mistake to give the Blasters a lead.
Ivan Vukamanovic’s side dropped back to defend well and denied Hyderabad FC too many chances before the break. Halicharan Narzary and Bartholomew Ogbeche had half chances but it was after the restart that Hyderabad managed to get a grip of the game.
Borja Herrera first, then Javi Siverio and Aaren D’Silva came on to add some impetus to the attack as the Kerala Blasters were starting to feel the pressure in the second half.
Joao Victor, Joel Chianese, Borja, Javi, Aaren, and Mohammad Yasir all had chances to test Prabsukhan Gill on the Kerala Blasters goal but found it difficult to convert as Hyderabad FC failed to score in a game for the first time this season.
The visitors frustrated Hyderabad FC with ten minutes to go, as the game heated up with the Kerala Blasters seeing three yellows at the death. But Vukamanovic’s game plan worked to the tee as his side registered all three points on a testing night in Gachibowli.
Hyderabad FC remain top of the league table with 16 points from seven games after the defeat. Kerala Blasters move up to third, with 12 points from their seven games.
Hyderabad FC are back in action when they take on ATK Mohun Bagan at the Saltlake Stadium in Kolkata on Saturday, November 26.