Kolkata, Nov 16 (UNI) Ejecting of sweeper-back Peter Odafe from halfway into the play did not prevent 10-man Mohun Bagan from holding a 2-0 lead inside 30 minutes over spirited JCT at 8th round of Indian League here today.
Before the Ghanaian was red carded two minutes into the breather by referee Dinesh Nair for repeated unlawful tacklings, Mohun Bagan took control over the game by goals from Isfaq Ahmed and Jose Barreto.
Kashmiri midfilder Ahmed, who was named man-of-the-match, nodded home following a cross from James Singh on 23 mintues and Barreto converted a penatly shot seven minutes later, enough score for Bagan to hold the advantage despite reducing to ten-men.
Bagan were given penalty shot after Barreto was brought down by defender Anwar. This was Barreto's third goal and Ahmed's first in the tournament.
JCT came to near scoring on two occasions in the first session but the woodwork and brilliant goalkeeping from Sangram Mukherjee frustrated the visitors.
Conceding two goals in a span of seven minutes JCT began counter attack in cohesion but luck did not favour them.
Amandeep Singh, who socred a goal against Churchill Brothers in Margao, was irresistible for some time in the first half and his stinging rightfooter hit the crosspiece after completely beating Mukherjee. Next time unfortunate man was Julius Akpele, whose shot was fisted out by Mukherjee and wnet out of play after hitting the post.
As JCT were bombarding into the goalmouth of Bagan, defender Peter Odafe lost his wits and resorted to rough tackling.
The referee first warned him by flashing a yellow card and his second offence tackling Eduardo Escobar from behind forced Nair to show him the door.
But the home team maintained their two goals lead and repulsed every attack with right combination.
With today's victory Bagan recorded three straight wins and remained undefeated in the last six games, collecting 12 points and JCT remained with nine points.
Coach Karim Bencherifa after the match said the win was vital for them as they have three more games against Vasco, Mahindra United and United SC.
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