I-League 2017/18: Raynier's injury serious, Bagan camp gloomy following the loss to Gokulam FC
Mohun Bagan lost its third home match this season
The title hopes for Mohun Bagan are all but over following their shocking defeat to bottom-placed Gokulam FC in the I-League on Monday afternoon at the Salt Lake Stadium. The injury struck home team was without the likes of Japanese Yut Kinowaki and veteran Kingshuk Debnath from the beginning. They lost the services of midfielder Raynier Fernandes in halfway through the game, which added to the misery.
At the stroke of halftime, Raynier was substituted after he got injured in his backbone. The blow to Bagan and also the poor display throughout the first 45 minutes affected the morale of the Bagan camp. Although they played much better in the second half, the green and maroon brigade failed to secure a point in the tie.
“The players have lost today, they are mentally tired. Raynier Fernandes is injured severely, which was the reason the players were demoralized during the half-time. So, due to all these reasons, the atmosphere around the camp is not so favorable,” said Shankarlal Chakraborty, the head coach of Mohun Bagan at the post-match press conference.
He also informed that Raynier’s backbone is affected due to which he suffered breathing problems. Needing nothing less than a win after their slip in the previous match against Chennai City FC, Mohun Bagan never created enough chances to take the lead in the first half. Instead, Gokulam FC was showing more intent. Cameron Watson was trying to marshal his troops forward, but the ball was getting lost as soon it reached the opponent’s box.
Bagan could have easily taken the lead in the second half if Akram Moghrabi hadn’t missed a sitter after he received an excellent ball from side-back Arijit Bagui. Gokulam FC drew first blood in the 76th minute when Bahrain’s Mahmoud Al Ajmi swiftly sent the ball towards the goal following Mudde Musa’s assist. A couple of minutes later, Dipanda Dicka’s header balanced the scoreline. Late in the game, Uganda’s Mudde Musa produced a brilliant strike to clinch full points for the visitors.
With the loss, Mohun Bagan stays in the 4th position of the I-League table. Meanwhile, Gokulam FC will be quite happy to take away three points from the away fixture; it will also enhance their chances of getting out if the relegation zone.