The second leg of the Maharashtra Derby in the Indian Super League this season remained a goalless stalemate at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai on Friday evening.
Both Mumbai City FC and FC Pune City earned a point from the game, and although there wasn't less of action in the game, it has to be said that both custodians played a big role for their respective teams today.
The first half remained a tight affair but none of the teams could create any real chance and the ball was continuously hovering in the midfield. Mumbai City FC marquee player Nicolas Anelka started the game today in the absence of key players Sunil Chhetri and Sony Norde, but the Frenchman could not make a real impact.
The best chance of the half fell in the path of Indian forward Subash Singh in the 27th minute. The fast-footed Manipuri forward got clean through inside the penalty box, and pulled the trigger on two occasions. While his first shot was blocked by Arindam Bhattacharya, his second shot was a shocking miss that saw the ball kiss the side netting and go out.
For the visitors, only marquee player Adrian Mutu could force a save from Subrata Paul. Turkey hotshot Tuncay Sanli did get his chances to score, but he could not take those opportunities.
The ex-Chelsea striker came close once again in the 75th minute of the game, but Paul this time as well, was up to the mark, as he parried away Mutu's strike from close-range. On the other end, Sampath Kuttimani was trying his shot on target, but Arindam Bhattacharya stayed firm in the goal.
In the closing stages, Nicolas Anelka had a go from a free-kick, but the Frenchman's attempt came off Roger Johnson for a corner. Also, in the dying minutes, Kalu Uche went for the spectacular, but this time as well, Subrata Paul's gloves came to the rescue.
The presence of Bollywood star Ranbir Kapoor may have not helped Mumbai City FC much, but it did inspire the home team not to allow FC Pune City get their first away win of the season.