Subrata Pal: MOM for Pune FC against Mohun Bagan
MOHUN BAGAN 0 – 0 PUNE F.C.
Subrata Pal, Indian national team’s custodian, stood strongly between Mohun Bagan and three points in the thrilling top of the table clash between Mohun Bagan and Pune FC, played at Kolkata. Both the teams got quite a few opportunities to put the ball at the back of the net, but were unable to break the deadlock in stipulated 90 minutes. Even though Mohun Bagan was able to put one past Subrata, a header from Deepak Mondal from a Marcos free-kick, but the Referee disallowed that goal citing a foul on one of the Pune defenders. Snehasish Chakraborty and Marcos missed two golden chances, when they could not score from close range with only Subrata to beat. Subrata also brilliantly saved from Barreto in the dying minutes of the match and deservedly bagged the Man of the Match award.
SHILLONG LAJONG 1 – 0 EAST BENGAL:
After an initial burst of 30 minutes, East Bengal slowly faded out of the match. East Bengal started the match brightly and Hammond’s curling freekick in the 4th minute just went wide. Then again in the 12th minute, Nirmal Chetri’s header, from inside six yards box, kissed the top of the bar on its way out. Lajong made their first meaningful attack at the 25th minute mark, when Nepalese international Anil Gurung tested Abhra Mondal with a long range effort. It was all Lajong after that, though East Bengal defended the goal-mouth quite well. The match was poised for a goalless draw but at the very end a beautiful side volley by “Man of the Match” Daniel Bedemi earned crucial three points for the Shillong side, which may prove to be vital in their fight for survival.
CHIRAG UNITED 2—4 CHURCHILL BROTHERS:
Edmilson (61`, 63`) Odafa (9`, 15`, 71`), Ogba Kalu (38`)
Odafa Okolie scored a brilliant hattrick in their away win over the Kolkata side. Chirag were completely outplayed as Churchill raced to a 3-0 lead by the half time. Chirag came out determined after the break and Edmilson scored two beautiful solo goals in a span of 2 minutes, to reduced to margin to 2-3. But it was the man of the moment, Odafa again, who hammered the last nail in Chirag’s coffin in the 71st minute and dashed any hopes of a comeback for Subrata Bhattacharya’s team. Edmilson was given the marching orders in the 78th minute for allegedly spitting on Churchill defender Robert’s face.
VIVA KERALA 1—0 DEMPO:
Rueben Senyo (42’)
Table topper Dempo faced a shock defeat at the hands of underdogs Viva Kerala in their away trip to Kerala. Rueben Senyo’s first half strike was enough for the Sreedharan men to seal the tie in their favour. The match was mostly a midfield battle, with none of the teams having the vision to create goal-scoring opportunities. Only after the introduction of their Brazilian playmaker Beto, late in the 2nd half, Dempo looked like breaking the shackles. But poor finishing from the strikers let them down. For Viva, Charles Dzisah and Bello Rassaq combination at the centre of the defense looked water tight.
MAHINDRA 2—1 AIR INDIA:
Steven Dias (19`) Vijith Shetty (54`)
Md. Rafi (31`)
Goals from Steven Dias and Mohammed Rafi in the first half ensured full three points, for the Zeepmen, from the city derby. Even though Air India pulled one back through Vijith Shetty, in the 54th minute, Mahindra kept their nerves intact till the very end to clinch the tie in their favor. Steven Dias deserves special mention for the amazing curling free-kick from around 25 yards out, which resulted in Mahindra’s opening goal. With this defeat, Air India finds themselves languishing at the 12th position, just 2 points above relegation zone.
SPORTING CLUB, GOA 2 – 2 Mumbai F.C.:
Joseph Pereira (22`) Nishant Mehra (10`)
Junior Elijah (68`) Hiralal Chetri (92`)
It was a heart-break for the Goan side as they had to content with a 2-2 draw against Mumbai FC in their Round-15 clash, thanks to a second half injury time strike by Hiralal Chetri. Mumbai took the lead against run of play, in the 10th minute, when Nishant Mehra scored his first goal of the campaign for the Mumbai side. Sporting responded strongly through Joseph Pereira, who slotted home the equalizer in the 22nd minute. Junior Elijah put the Goan side in the lead in the 68th minute and in sights of their first win of the campaign. But they were denied victory deep into injury time as Hiralal Chettri scored the all important equalizer for Mumbai FC.
JCT 1 – 1 SALGAOCAR
Henry (47`) Ekene (69`)
Karim Bencherifa is yet to witness his first win in Salgaocar colors. The game ended in a 1-1 draw at Ludhiana, which earned both Salgaocar and JCT a point each. JCT had to play the entire second half with 10 men, as Gurpreet Singh got his second yellow of the match after handling a ball inside the box. Henry Ezeh scored the first goal of the match for JCT just after the interval. The strike brought the match alive with Salgaocar pressing for the equalizer. JCT shot-stopper Karanjeet Singh produced a number of brilliant saves to keep Salgaocar at bay. However Salgaocar levelled the score through Ekene Ikenwa, who slotted a header in the back of the net twenty minutes from time.