U-19 I-League: Pune FC down Mumbai FC 3-0 in the opener; clinch Maha-Derby bragging rights
Pune FC Under-19 opened their campaign with a comfortable 3-0 win over archrivals Mumbai FC in the Under-19 I-League 2014/15 at the Pune FC Training Pitches in Mamurdi on Saturday. Defender Asheer Akhtar (3rd minute) gave Pune FC the lead before an own goal from Mumbai FC's Nishant Shetty (16th) doubled the advantage. Skipper Altamash Sayed (70th) rounded off the scoring in the second half to seal the Maha-Derby win.
The scoreline would have been much different had Pune FC converted the number of chances that fell their way throughout the game. Furthermore, Mumbai FC were reduced to ten men midway through the first half after skipper Girik Khosla was sent off for a second bookable offence.
Pune FC began the game on the offensive with winger Chesterpaul Lyngdoh going close on a couple of occasions from inside the box in the opening five minutes only to be denied by the Mumbai FC custodian. In the 8th minute, Altamash on the right went on a dazzling run inside the box, but his attempt from the edge of the box after dribbling four defenders went agonisingly wide into the side-netting.
A minute later, Pune FC took the lead. Having received the ball down the middle from the right, defender Asheer fired a low powerful shot into the box which the keeper fumbled and allowed to pass through into the goal. Pune FC kept the pressure on and attacked the rival goal repeatedly before being rewarded in the 16th minute. Winger Dimple Bhagat created space on the left and sent in a crisp cross to Chesterpaul racing inside the box. Ex-Pune FC player Nishant tried to match him up but ended up heading the ball into his own net.
At the other end, Pune FC survived a close call after Dimple Bhagat cleared a header off the line after keeper Iprotip Das failed to judge the ball on a corner kick. It went from bad to worse for Mumbai FC who had skipper Girik sent off for a second bookable offense in the 23rd minute. Minutes later, Pune FC almost got the third but Sannik Murmu’s effort came off the woodwork.
As the game progressed, Pune FC almost camped in the opponent’s half creating chance after chance only to be denied by some poor finishing in the final third. Pune FC went into the breather with a two goal advantage.
The second half was a similar story as Pune FC continued to press up. However, Mumbai FC preferred to defend deep to avoid further damage. Having created several chances, Pune FC finally got the third in the 70th minute. Medio Sanchayan Samadder’s perfect over the top ball found Altamash who chested down only for the Mumbai FC keeper to block it with a diving save. However, the keeper failed to keep the ball in control and Altamash capitalised to the slide the ball home from close range.
Pune FC had another chance in the final five minutes of the game, but some poor finishing from substitute Farukh Choudhary and Altamash kept the score at 3-0.