East Bengal back on the winning note
34th Federation Cup champions East Bengal got back on the winning note, as they beat youthful Pailan Arrows 3-0. With this win, East Bengal ended the first phase of their campaign in the I-League with 24 points from 12 games. After defeats in their last two games against Prayag United and Mumbai FC, East Bengal players were very much keen to get back onto the winning track. Yesterday’s match might have been one of Sanju Prdhan’s best matches, as two world-class strikes from him gave him the Man of the Match award.
The match was played in the Kalyani Municipal Stadium, where big budget East Bengal showed their dominance and class against an inexperienced side. From the very first minute, East Bengal started their attacks one after another. The first real chance came for East Bengal striker Edeh Chidi in the 34th minute, when his attempt was denied by a Pailan defender. Robin Singh, who was not in his best touch, scored the first goal for the Red & Gold Brigade in the 44th minute, when he fired his left footer into the the Pailan net.
In the second half, it was completely one way traffic. East Bengal captain Sanju Pradhan, who came back in the starting 11 after a long time, scored his first goal in the 55th minute with a brilliant right footer perfectly guided into the right top corner. Sanju’s second goal was even better than his first one. In the 86th minute, Pradhan moved up once again to fire another long ranger, which ended Pailan’s hope.
Pailan striker Alwyn George missed the easiest of chances in the 70th minute, when he failed to guide the ball from a mistimed clearance from the East Bengal goal-keeper Abhijit Mondal, into the open East Bengal net.
With this loss, Pailan remain on 14 points from 12 matches.