Kolkata, Nov 7 (UNI) Brilliant goalkeeping by Subrata Pal deprived Mahindra United a win as they settled for a 1-1 draw with East Bengal in the 7th round of the 2nd Indian League at Yuba Bharati Krirangan here this evening.
Substitute Paresh Shivalkar shot home minutes after his entry in second half to give Mahindra United lead (1-0), but the Kolkata giant restored parity just after three minutes through mercurial Sunil Chettri (1-1), his second goal in the IL.
Shivalkar was brought in on the 55th mintue by coach Derrick Pereira replacing N P Praddep to speed up the game after first half saw a goalless event, though MU dominated the proceeding.
Shivalkar netted in from his left in the 58th minute when Chidi Edeh sent a cross from right flank. Subrata Pal could not fathom the movment of the newcomer, who was almost unmarked.
But MU could not hold lead for long as a powerful leftfooter from Sunil Chettri found the net three minutes later. A Syed Rahim Nabi and Yusif Yakubu's one-two combination found Sunil, whose sudden grounder defeated Subhashish Roy Choudhury.
The game was 29th meeting between the Kolkata side and Mumbai team with 15 wins for EB and eight for MU and six draws.
After the seventh round EB collected nine points and MU seven.
In the first half, MU did everything barring converting chances that came in their way, thanks to brilliant goalkeeping of India internatinal Subrata Pal. Pal stood like Chinese wall to the jeepmen on at least three occasions.
Paul frustrated Sushil Kumar Singh on the 20th mintue when his penetrating shot through a maze of legs was stopped by the custodian. Twelve mintues later his header off N P Pradeep freekick from left flank was fisted out by Pal for corner.
Earlier Edhe Chidi, who scored a goal against Vasco, had a possible goal scoring chance but he failed to trap an aerial pass from Sushant Mathew. The visitors had managed to earn five corners in the first session and proved how dominant they were in the away match.
East Bengal were unlucky not to get a goal when Sunil Chettri's shot hit the upper post in 51st minute.
This was EB's third drawn match on a trot.
Derrick Periera after the match said he was happy with his boys' performance.
EB coach Stanley Rozario looked depressed at the result.
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