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I-League 2019-20: Stoppage-time Penalty Earns Indian Arrows Draw against Punjab FC

Indian Arrows drew 1-1- with Punjab FC (Photo Credit: I-League)

Indian Arrows drew 1-1- with Punjab FC (Photo Credit: I-League)

Indian Arrows held Punjab FC to a dramatic 1-1 draw thanks to a stoppage-time penalty in the I-League.

Mumbai: Indian Arrows earned a dramatic 1-1 draw against second-placed Punjab FC at Cooperage Stadium here on Tuesday.

Sanju Pradhan opened the scoring in the sixth minute before Givson Singh's stoppage-time penalty in the second half ensured a point in what was a grand-stand finish to an exciting affair.

The visitors struck early, albeit with a stroke of good fortune.

Pradhan's set-piece delivery from distance was miscued by Arrows keeper Samik Mitra, who missed the ball with his attempted punch and saw it bulge into the back of the net.

Punjab continued to make good use of possession and had their game plan chalked out well, frustrating the home side.

To make matters worse for the Arrows, they were dealt an injury blow early on in the 22nd minute and had to take off forward Gurkirat Singh, with Aman Chetri coming on as his replacement.

Substitute Chetri carved a decent opportunity for himself in the 32nd minute, having made a good run to leave his marker trailing but his finish let him down, blasting his shot wide off the woodwork.

Punjab had a 'heart-in-the-mouth' moment after the game resumed, when Anwar Ali's wayward back-pass was latched onto by a lurking Harmanpreet Singh in the 51st minute.

However, keeper Kiran Limbu was alert and made the intervention just in time to thwart the momentary peril.

The writing seemed to be on the wall for the Arrows, as Punjab neutralised any and every offensive proceeding from the hosts, but the drama hadn't unfurled yet.

The Arrows piled on the pressure towards the dying minutes and in the first minute of stoppage time, Ajin Tom's delivery from the right was tracked down well by substitute Manvir Singh but he was stopped in his tracks by Ali.

The referee, straightaway, pointed to thespot, awarding the hosts a lifeline from 12 yards.

Ali was booked for his challenge whilst Givson Singh stepped up for the spot-kick and found the net with fine aplomb, sending Limbu in goal the wrong way.

The full-time whistle shortly afterwards confirmed the spoils being shared.

Punjab remain second on the table with 23 points now, while the Arrows add a point to their tally to have nine points.

first published:March 04, 2020, 07:12 IST