Tournament's top-scorer Delhi FC defeated Mohammedan Sporting Club 7-2 to be crowned as the champions of the first-ever edition of the Futsal Club Championship at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium in New Delhi, on Saturday, November 13, 2021.
Delhi captain Nikhil Mali was the star of the show once again, as he netted five goals in the final, bringing his overall tournament tally to 24 goals. Mali averaged at least three goals in every match in the Futsal Club Championship.
The club from the Capital city was in charge right from the start. They opened the scoring through Lalpekhlua whose curling effort found the top-left corner quite delightfully.
Both teams kept pressing high in the initial stages of the game, and as a result, neither side could settle down and gain a firm foothold. Delhi FC kept coming at the Mohammedan goal but the side from Kolkata was able to keep them at bay. Jayesh Sutar made a big impact for Mohammedan when he came on as he kept Nikhil Mali relatively quiet on one end and acted as a launchpad for the attacks.
Although Delhi FC have been a free-flowing attacking team in this tournament, Scott Moraes has been a huge asset for the team in front of the goal. Jayesh Sutar was the man who created the first real chance of the game for Mohammedan when his shot took a deflection off a defender. However, Moraes reacted brilliantly to parry the ball away. He produced a miraculous double-save as well, this time denying Sherman Vaz in the process.
The Black Panthers pulled level on the 12-minute mark. Jayesh Sutar saw that Scott Moraes was off his line and scored via an audacious chip from his own half. The joy did not last long for Mohammedan SC though, as Nikhil Mali gave his side the lead moments before the half-time whistle.
Although Delhi had a slender lead, the second half promised to be another humdinger of an affair, as the tie hung in the balance.
It delivered on the promise as neither side gave any space to their opponents in attack. In the 26th minute, Delhi FC got the insurance goal that they were looking for. Rohit Mulchandani smashed the ball into the back of the net with sheer power after Nikhil Mali laid it into his path from a free-kick.
After that, it was a comfortable ride for Delhi FC as confidence rose with each passing second. Nikhil Mali scored his second goal of the game in the 28th minute, making it 4-1 for the capital side.
Mohammedan had the chance to score from a penalty in the 30th minute, but Mihir Sawant blazed his shot over the cross-bar. In the 32nd minute, it felt like the inevitable happened as Nikhil Mali scored his third goal of the game, completing his fifth hat-trick in as many.
Snedden pulled a goal back a minute later for Mohammedan, but Mali scored from the spot on the other end, making it 6-2.
With nearly two minutes left on the clock, Mali scored his fifth goal of the match, taking his tally to 24 goals in the tournament and giving his side a 7-2 victory in the final.
Featured photo: AIFF