KOCHI: It was well into their third home match on Friday when Kerala Blasters FC scored their opening goal of the season. And the team duly bid a huge ‘thanks’ to their die-hard fans at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, for their relentless support in the Indian Super League.
This may well have forced Michael Chopra, who struck for the first time in the ISL, to celebrate the goal against Mumbai City FC with the fans before joining his teammates. Though the massive venue witnessed a comparatively lower attendance (40,013), it did not dampen the boisterous atmosphere that the fans keep creating.
“This was what we needed, and we were waiting for the win. There was no room for Mumbai City FC to overshadow Kerala Blasters in Friday’s game. An attempt on the Blasters’ goal in the 68th minute will be the only moment Mumbai will carry in their minds. This is just a beginning and we will be back with a roar,” said Manaf, a Blasters fan hailing from Alappuzha.
“It would have been near impossible for the Blasters not to score as we had given huge support. This is a real gift from the team for the fans,” said Riyas, who came from Palakkad to see the match for the second time. However, the moody climate and the low attendance dampened the start of the game. But with KBFC stepping up the attack very early, the crowd began to sense that this was going to be their night.
Sachin Tendulkar who came to see the match with his wife Anjaly also joined the fans to encourage the team. Taking selfies with the fans and waving at them, the master blaster continued to support the team until the match ended 1-0 in the hosts’ favour.