Odisha FC registered an important win after getting the better of Chennaiyin FC 2-0 in a Indian Super League clash at the Kalinga Stadium here on Monday.
First-half goals from Jerry Mawihmingthanga (37’) and Vinit Rai (41’) were enough for Josep Gombau’s side to make it three wins out of their last four matches.
The upturn in form has seen Odisha FC (15 points from 11 matches) climb to within a point of fourth-placed Mumbai City FC. A fifth defeat of the season for Chennaiyin FC sees them languishing in ninth position.
Marcos Tebar headed in an Odisha FC corner in the 21st minute only to see the referee disallow the goal for an obstruction on Chennaiyin goalkeeper Vishal Kaith.
In the 24th minute, there was more drama as Shubham Sarangi was adjudged to have wrestled Chennaiyin striker Nerijus Valskis to the ground. The referee awarded a penalty, but Valskis sent the spotkick well over.
Chennaiyin would regret that miss as Odisha scored two goals in quick succession to floor the away side. In the 37th minute, Xisco fed Aridane Santana down the right-wing. He flashed a cross across the box and Jerry had an easy task of tapping it in.
Four minutes later, Chennaiyin were left stunned as Vinit Rai unleashed a powerful long ranger to double the lead.
After the restart, Chennaiyin showed a bit more urgency in their bid to claw back into the game but could not really settle into any rhythm.
Lallianzuala Chhangte and Rafael Crivellaro did get into threatening positions but could not find a telling final ball as the away side’s frustrations grew.