Seasoned Nandhakumar Sekar loved essentially the most defining day of his soccer profession with a swerving left-footer that ended East Bengal’s 1658-day derby jinx because the red-and-gold brigade beat arch-rivals Mohun Bagan 1-0 in a Durand Cup match right here on Saturday.
The sixtieth minute objective additionally put Mohun Bagan’s easy entry into the quarter-finals on maintain as East Bengal can pip them to a final eight spot in the event that they occur to win in opposition to Punjab FC of their final group league encounter on Wednesday.
whereas East Bengal have 4 factors from two video games.
Six group toppers and two finest runners-up make up the last-eight.
Below Bengaluru FC’s Indian Tremendous League successful coach Carles Cuadrat, East Bengal appeared way more compact and the ahead lineup bought again their standard aptitude with Nandhakumar’s worldwide class strike.
The previous Odisha FC midfielder capitalised on an help from Saul Crespo from the precise flank as he well outfoxed Mohun Bagan’s India worldwide Aniruddh Thapa with an outdoor dodge.
East Bengal had final gained in opposition to Mohun Bagan, a 2-0 consequence, manner again on January 27, 2019 within the I-League.
Since then, Mohun Bagan have gained eight on the trot and drew as soon as in opposition to East Bengal throughout all competitions.
It was additionally a giant setback for the Mariners who will open their AFC Cup marketing campaign in 4 days’ time on the similar venue in opposition to a workforce from Nepal.
In entrance of a packed crowd of fifty,000 plus on the Salt Lake Stadium, Cuadrat left a visual impression early on because the midfield appeared a lot compact and had the higher of ball possession, whereas the ahead pressed early on in a goalless, however thrilling first-half.
Additionally they had the primary shot on the right track from a eleventh minute free-kick however Jordan Elsey couldn’t time his header to perfection and Mohun Bagan goalkeeper Kaith had a straightforward interception.
The assault was relentless and 7 minutes later, Naorem Mahesh beat Mohun Bagan defence to set it up for Javier Siverio, however Brendan Hamill got here in his manner for a key save.
East Bengal had one other probability within the twenty third minute when Nandhakumar wasted a chance after being arrange by Naorem and Siverio.
Nevertheless it was their goalkeeper Prabhaukhan Singh Gill who made an impression within the first-half with a superb save within the 45+2nd minute, that denied Mohun Bagan the much-anticipated lead.
Harmanjot Singh Khabra fouled and Boumous drilled in an ideal free-kick as a full-stretched Gill jumped excessive with a assured save.
After scoring the much-awaited objective, East Bengal closed ranks and thwarted Mohun Bagan’s each raid.
Manvir Singh and Dimitri Petratos mixed to try to rating within the 58th minute however East Bengal defence foiled their try.
The final 10 minutes performed below a heavy downpour as East Bengal managed to carry on to their slender lead.
Cuadrat had a 4-4-2 formation to begin off with Borja and Siverio main the assault, whereas Lal Chungnunga and Spaniard Jordan Elsey helmed the central defence.
Mohun Bagan too had an analogous formation with Ferrando bringing in Ashish Rai, Anirudh Thapa and Armando Sadiku in three adjustments to his lineup.
Whereas Sadiku and Hugo Boumous led the assault, Thapa was in-charge of the central midfield with Glan Martins. Rai and Subhashish Bose took care of the flanks within the defence helmed by Anwar Ali and Brendan Hamill.
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