Atletico de Kolkata beat Kerala Blasters to win inaugural Indian Super League title

Kolkata: Atletico de Kolkata were crowned the winners of the inaugural Indian Super League on Saturday after beating Kerala Blasters 1-0 in a final featuring two teams owned by former India cricket captains.

Kerala, co-owned by cricket great Sachin Tendulkar, dominated the match but Mohammad Rafique came off the bench to head home the stoppage-time winner at the D.Y. Patil Stadium near Mumbai. Kerala created several opportunities but paid the price for the profligacy of their forwards, especially former Newcastle striker Michael Chopra.

For the Kolkata side, co-owned by Spanish club Atletico Madrid and former India cricket captain Sourav Ganguly, goalkeeper Edel Bete pulled off several saves to thwart Kerala, led and managed by former England goalkeeper David James.

Less than 10 minutes before the end of regulation time, Chopra shook off his marker inside the box and dodged another defender before unleashing a shot which an airborne Edel parried away as the striker stood with his head in his hands.

The first edition of the eight-team tournament with celebrity owners and a sprinkling of high-profile players proved quite a hit in an otherwise cricket-crazy country.

Bankrolled by India’s Reliance Industries, Rupert Murdoch’s Star India and sports management group IMG, ISL has attracted players including Italian World Cup winners Alessandro Del Piero and Marco Materazzi and former Arsenal midfielder Robert Pires.

Posted by on December 20, 2014. Filed under Sports World. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.