IFA Shield 2018 : Mohun Bagan finish top of Group B , BFA defeat Churchill Brothers
The Group stage of the IFA Shield 2018 finally came to a conclusion on Thursday, when Mohun Bagan registered a comfortable win over TATA Football Academy and Bengal Football Academy earned a hard-fought 2-1 win over Goan side Churchill Brothers in Howrah and Barasat respectively.
With both the teams Mohun Bagan and Tata Football Academy (TFA) already qualified for the Semi-Finals, the main showpiece game of the day was nothing but a dead-rubber in terms of qualification to the next stage. However, the game did have an impact on deciding the table topper of Group B.
Mohun Bagan looked the better side right from the kick-off as they opened up the nervy TFA defence several times in the first few minutes. The Mariners were rewarded accordingly for their initial pressing as they drew first blood in the game through Saha who was put through on goal with an incisive ball piercing the TFA midfield, who slotted it home past the TFA goalkeeper in the sixth minute.
The first half was largely dominated by Mohun Bagan. The Mariners got numerous crosses into the middle, troubling the TFA defence regularly. Bagan came close to scoring in the 18th Minute when one of their corners somehow managed to go goalwards only to be cleared off the line by the defender at the far post.
TFA got a few chances of their own late in the first half but were unable to convert them in goals.
The second half was largely a cagey affair with TFA managing to contain the Mohun Bagan juggernaut. TFA opened up the Mariners at back on a few occasions but lack of accuracy and temperament from the strikers upfront did not trouble Mariners at all.
Mohun Bagan put the game to bed in the 89th Minute by scoring the second of the day through Tyagi.
In the other game, Churchill Brothers lost to a comparatively better Bengal Football Academy (BFA) side in a pulsating encounter in the Barasat Stadium.
Mohun Bagan will next face Group A Runners Up SAIL Burnpur on 16th July while TFA would cross swords with Group A Winners East Bengal on 15th July.