ISL 2020-21: Alexander rescues a point for Odisha vs Hyderabad

Odisha FC's Cole Alexander (arms raised) celebrates scoring the equaliser against Hyderabad FC.
Odisha FC's Cole Alexander (arms raised) celebrates scoring the equaliser against Hyderabad FC.
Deepak Malik/Sportzpics for ISL

Cole Alexander's 51st minute goal helped Odisha FC fight back to earn a point with a 1-1 draw in the Indian Super League against Hyderabad FC at the Fatorda Stadium on Tuesday.

Halicharan Narzary (13') put Hyderabad ahead at the break but saw his header cancelled out after a fine strike from Alexander in the second half. 

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Hyderabad dominated the first half, and created numerous chances before going into the break with a deserving lead.

The first big chance for Hyderabad came in the 11th minute when Asish Rai drilled a low cross into the box, which was spilled by Arshdeep, and fell straight into the path of Narzary. The forward unleashed a shot but Jacob Tratt saved Odisha the blushes with a crucial block.

Hyderabad broke the deadlock just two minutes later. After receiving a long ball from keeper Laxmikant Kattimani, Aridane Santana flicked it on towards Liston Colaco, who made a run in the box. The youngster squared it towards Narzary, who notched his fourth goal of the season with an easy tap-in.

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Hyderabad had a golden opportunity to double the lead in the first-half but were denied by the woodwork. Colaco was involved in the move again, playing the ball to Aridane, who found Narzary on the left. The goal-scorer cut inside and fired a shot towards the bottom corner, which came off the upright before being cleared out.

Odisha drew level from a set-piece against the run of play soon after the break. Rakesh Pradhan found Diego Mauricio from a throw-in, and the latter played the ball towards Alexander. The Odisha captain struck on the volley from outside the box, as Kattimani stood still, watching the ball head into the bottom corner.

Stuart Baxter's side should have taken the lead late in the 74th minute but Akash Mishra came to Hyderabad's rescue. Mauricio made his way into the box after beating his marker before flicking a shot over Kattimani. However, his goal-bound effort was cleared by Mishra, whose clearance struck the underside of the bar before heading out.

Odisha continued to push for a winner in the dying minutes but some gritty defending from Hyderabad saw the two sides settle for a point.