NorthEast United extended their unbeaten run in the Indian Super League after a goalless draw with Chennaiyin FC here on Sunday.
With one point from the match, the Highlanders are placed joint second with ATK Mohun Bagan on 10 points while Chennaiyin have now failed to pick up a win in their last four matches.
NorthEast United made three changes to their side as Idrissa Sylla started upfront ahead of Kwesi Appiah. Chennaiyin made two changes to their line-up with Anirudh Thapa among the substitutes.
NorthEast keeper Gurmeet Singh was called into action early on as Chennaiyin created a chance in the first minute. Lallianzuala Chhangte received a long ball from Jakub Sylvestr in the box but his shot was parried away by Gurmeet.
Five minutes later, Edwin Vanspaul had another opportunity to put Chennaiyin ahead. The midfielder pounced on a loose ball following a clearance, only to see his effort narrowly miss the far post.
NorthEast too had their chances and came close to breaking the deadlock in the 18th minute. Benjamin Lambot, unmarked in the box, won a free header from a corner but failed to place his effort on target.
Another big opportunity went begging for the Highlanders in the 38th minute, again coming through a set-piece. Luis Machado whipped a teasing cross into the box from a corner for Dylan Fox, who only managed to fire his effort over the crossbar.
Both teams began the second half with intent. The Highlanders created a clear-cut chance in the 55th minute, only to be denied by Chennaiyin keeper Vishal Kaith.
VP Suhair received the ball on the left flank and fired a cross into the box for Sylla, whose powerful shot was tipped over the crossbar.
Chhangte had another opportunity to score the opener before the hour mark. After receiving the ball on the rebound after a save from Gurmeet, the winger placed his effort over the bar from close range.
However, the best chance of the game arrived during the 66th minute and NorthEast should have taken the lead. Substitute Rochharzela split the Chennaiyin defense with a lovely through ball for Sylla. The striker, with only Kaith to beat, poked his shot inches wide of the post.
NorthEast United continued to threaten their opponents in the dying minutes of the game but failed to find a winner.