NEW DELHI: Jamshedpur FC notched up their maiden win of the Indian Super League with a solitary goal victory over struggling Delhi Dynamos here today.
Nigerian forward Izu Azuka struck in the 60th minute to score ISL newcomers Jamshedpur's first goal and hand his side the first win after three goal-less draws on the trot.
For the Dynamos, it was their third loss on the trot after beginning the season with a 3-2 win over FC Pune City in an away match. This was their second consecutive loss at home after their 0-2 defeat at the hands of NorthEast United on December 2.
Despite concerns of poor quality of air in the national capital prior to today's match, it was one of the better days in terms of pollution and the focus was on football. But the 8000-odd crowd who turned up at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium must have returned disappointed at the show of the home side.
Neither side could find a way to score in the first half as each of them has one shot on target. The Dynamos had over 60 percent possession but they don ot have much to show except for a disallowed goal.
Jamshedpur, barring one good run from Siddharth Singh, had nothing worth mentioning either.
In the 13th minute, Dynamos captain Kalu Uche was able to find the back of Jamshedpur net off a free-kick by Paulinho Dias but he was ruled off-side to the dismay of the home crowd.
Eight minute later, it was the turn of Jamshedpur to have a shy at the Dynamos goal. Bikash Jairu darted down the left channel and he had Izu Azuka running on his right.
But Jairu's square pass was played a little behind Azuka who nonetheless managed to get a shot which was just wide of the near post.
The second half was more action-filled as compared to the first 45 minutes.
Jamshedpur were clearly the better side after the break and they were handed a golden chance to take the lead in the 57th minute when Pratik Chowdhary brought down Azuka inside the box just moments before the Jamshedpur forward was about to release a shot at the goal.
A penalty kick was awarded but Andre Bikey made a horrible effort from the spot and Dynamos keeper Albino Gaomes dived to his right to stop the weak shot.
But, the visitors did not need to wait for long for their first goal of the season as Azuka headed home at the stroke of the hour mark off a free kick.
Mehtab Hossain took the free kick and curled it in right in the middle of the box, where Azuka made his run. Nobody picked him up and the Jamshedpur forward connected it with his head after a good leap and beat the keeper Subrata Paul comfortably.
The Dynamos applied pressure in the closing stages of the match but their forwards were toothless and midfield lacked creativity and they rarely threatened the Jamshedpur goal.