East Bengal create history in the derby victory
by Chirag R Bhattad
It was a big game for both the clubs. East Bengal needed to win to stay relevant in the title race and chase Chennai City FC and Churchill Brothers. Mohun Bagan, on the other hand, did not want their arch rivals to create history and do the double in the derby for the first time in the I-league history.
In the 35th minute, Jobby Justin skipped past Kingsley to drill in a low ball for Jaime Costa. Costa breezed past Gurjinder to slot the ball in the back of the net to give the Red and Golds the advantage. In the 53rd minute, Mohun Bagan had the ball in the back of the net, only for Kingsley to be flagged offside as he connected sweetly with a Sony Norde cross.
The second half was a nervous affair for East Bengal who were desperate to hold onto their lead. In the 76th minute, Jobby Justin connected cleanly with a Didika’s corner to double their lead and put the game beyond Mohun Bagan. After the second goal, Khalid Jamil made a defensive substitution to quell the leakage of goals.
In the end, East Bengal saw off a late reply by Mohun Bagan to win the game comfortably 2-0. Khalid Jamil, the man who masterminded Aizawl FCs title triumph, was no match to East bengal’s Menendez’s tactical nuance. The latter’s side was fluidic in attack which caused a major headache to the Mohun Bagan backline.
The defeat saw Mohun Bagan stay in the 6th position, four points behind their city rivals East Bengal, having played a game more. Their minute hopes of a title charge have died along with the defeat and it looks like they have very little to play for this season. It looks like they will miss out on the I-League crown for a 4th year running.