I-League 2018-19: 3 reasons why East Bengal lost to Chennai City
East Bengal’s four-match unbeaten run finally ended with a heart-breaking loss against Chennai City. The I-League leaders made a great comeback in the second half to win the match 2-1 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Coimbatore on Monday.
It was a ‘double’ by Chennai City, who also won their away match at Kolkata against East Bengal. With 27 points from 12 matches, Chennai City are well and truly on their way to lift the title. They are five points ahead of the second-placed Churchill Brothers.
The match was crucial for East Bengal as a win could’ve made them a strong contender for I-League. They started brilliantly and got the lead as early as ninth minute, thanks to a fine header by Laldanmawia Ralte, who got his fourth goal of the campaign. Joby Justin then missed a golden chance to double the lead.
Chennai City came with a different approach in the second half and Pedro Manzi got his 11th goal of the campaign when he deflected a shot from Alexander Romario Jesuraj. Romario got his name on his name on the scoresheet in the 70th minute when his weak shot somehow entered the goal.
Let us look at the three reasons why East Bengal went down against Chennai City:
#3 Keeping patience and tactical switch worked wonders for Chennai City
The last time when Chennai City defeated East Bengal in their opening match, they had made a short work of their opponents. East Bengal were still struggling to get their foot in the league and had not even all players settled.
Monday’s encounter was different, given the fact that the Red and Golds had all their foreigners in place, who were looking comfortable. In that scenario, Chennai opted for the wait and watch policy.
Even after conceding an early, not a single Chennai player panicked. They kept looking for their chances. Their motto was to keep things simple and let the goals come eventually.
Chennai coach Akbar Nawas has done a commendable job by instilling confidence among the Indian players. The likes of Edwin Vanspaul and Gourav Bora are now more matured.
But the transformation of the local players is astonishing. Pravitto Raju, Alexander Jesuraj, Ajithkumar Kamaraj do not fear to face bigger opponents anymore. Their performance is an added boost for the side.
Romario, who likes to play from the right flank, was shifted into middle and Raju took his place. It worked wonders as Romario was involved in both the goals. Also, his pace created danger in East Bengal defence.