Barasat, Nov 25 (UNI) East Bengal began their I-League campaign with a 2-0 victory over Viva Kerala here today.
Fresh from three defeats and a draw in the last four games of Kolkata Premier League, East Bengal began shakily and were far from convincing for the major part of the match.
It was only after Ashim Biswas was injected into the side in the 65th minute the fortunes of the home side changed.
Brazilian striker Edmilson Marques and Alvito D Cunha struck the goals in 73rd and in 80th minute, respectively.
Biswas, receiving a lose ball in the left, made a superb half-turn and sent a superb curling floater that Edmilson tapped in the 73 rd minute.
Seven minutes on Alvito doubled the lead, unleashing a magnificent 35-yard left footer that swung back and went into the net leaving Viva keeper Nelson high and dry.
But the victory apart, Subrata Bhattacharya would be a worried coach. He must rethink about his newly signed South African World Cupper striker Mcdonald Mukansi. The striker, after his disastrous debut in Indian soccer in the Kolkata Premier League (KPL) against George Telegraph recently, was on the field for 65 minutes. And it was painful to see him play. A rank bad first touch and poor finish hardly matched his profile.
As a result the home team looked often collapsing in the attacking-third, for the whole first session.
Viva Kerala, however, fought bravely. Their defense and midfield was extremely composed. They often confused their star-studded opposition by launching excellent square passes in between in the central midfield area. They had two crafty strikers also Wisdom Abbey and B Baba Tunde.
But the horror of flood-light goof-ups did not leave Indian soccer as the second half saw a 15-minute delay as the north end flood-lights tripped.