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East Bengal sink Churchill Bros
November 18, 2012
MARGAO: Nigerian goal machine Edeh Chidi’s predatory instincts and basic errors by rival
defenders was enough for Federation Cup champions East Bengal to get the better of Churchill Brothers 3-0 in the sixth round I-League match at Nehru Stadium, Fatorda, Saturday. East Bengal led 1-0 at the breather.
Churchill Bro skipper Beto in a tussle with an East Bengal
player in a sixth round I-League football encounter at Nehru
Stadium, Fatorda, Saturday.
The highlight of the day was a fine brace by striker Edeh Chidi that left the home team bleeding Promising striker Manandeep Singh also added his name to the scorer list.
Chidi opened the scoring in the very fourth minute as the Churchill Bros. Central midfielder Harmanjot Singh Khabra picked the ball from the centre and outwitted a couple of rival defenders and passed the ball to Chidi to do the rest, who fired the ball past the rival goalkeeper to keep the home crowd silent.
Churchill Bros came close to levelling the score in the 37th minute when Steven Dias floated the ball from the right but Lebanese striker Akram Moghrabi kick from the first post deflected off the rival defender.
In the 42nd minute, East Bengal nearly doubled the lead but rival defender Ravanan came to his side’s rescue when he cleared the ball before rival midfielder Isshaq Ahmed could do any damsge off a Chidi pass.
Chidi squandered a chance after he was fed by Pen Orji inside the rival penalty box.
Post resumption, Churchill Bros tried to bounce back into the game as they created many forays into the rival territory and nearly found the equalizer in the 49th minute but Akram’s smart header went over the crossbar off a well executed chip from Tomba Singh.
Later, Denzil Franco’s well measured cross from the flanks was blocked by East Bengal goalkeeper Gupreet Singh in the 57th minute. Five minutes later, Akram well timed header missed the mark by a few inches off a cross from Steven Dias. Churchill Bros creating more chances but could not score due to inept shooting by their forwards.
Just when things began looking good for the hosts they conceded another goal in the 76th minute through striker Manandeep Singh. Following a through pass by Subodh Kumar from the right saw Manandeep Singh turning in style and unleashing a left-footer which beat the Churchill Bros goalkeeper Sandip Nandy.
Stung by the double blows, Churchill Bros regrouped quickly and nearly reduced the deficit but substitute Henri’s rasping shot was thwarted by rival defender Noaba Singh after the East Bengal goalkeeper was beaten by the flight of the ball. Captain Uga Okpara alongwith Subodh Kumar were a delight to watch, making surging runs, exhibiting their skill and then defending clinically.
Chidi added insult to injury when he punished the rival goalkeeper with a clinical finish after the capped a back pass from rival substitute Gurtej Singh.
With this win, East Bengal climb to the top spot with 14 points from six matches displacing Dempo to second spot while Churchill Bros suffered their second home defeat and stay on 12 points from the same number of encounters.
East Bengal goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh was adjudged man-of-the-match.
East Bengal coach Trevor Morgan was elated with the three points and the margin of victory. “I am happy with the performance of my boys and most importantly the winning the away match defeating Churchill Bros. It was no easy task but my boys gave a good account of themselves and played according to our plans,” Morgan said at the post match briefing.
“Our plans did not work and somehow our players did not click today. We will forget this loss in a hurry as we have bigger challenges ahead,” said Mariano Dias coach of Churchill Bros.