Kolkata, Apr 2 (UNI) Two fortuitous goals helped East Bengal earn a facile victory over Mohammedan Sporting in Phase I NFL tie here tonight.
East Bengal are now on 21 from 10 matches while Mohammedan Sporting are on 14 from 11.
East Bengal shot into lead in the very second minute of the game when Mohammedan keeper Gopal Das made a mess of a Ndem freekick from the top of the box that bounced awkwardly in front of Gopal Das before going in.
East Bengal got the second goal, 54 minutes into the match when a Baichung freekick deflected off Muhammed Mukhtar to balloon into the net 2-0.
Sixteen minutes into the match, Ndem fired another grounder that missed its mark by a whisker.
Twenty three minutes into the game, Patrick made a rash tackle on Anupam Sarkar. However, Referee M Mohan chose to show only a yellow card.
Mohammedan's only chance to restore parity in the first half came when Mukhtar ran down the middle before flicking the ball to Suman Dey, who shot wide from close.
Meanwhile, Gopal Das made amends for the mistake by bringing off a brilliant save of a Baichung volley after the striker was set up by Sashti Pillay.
Though Mohammedan had a better percentage of ball possession, they could not really put pressure on East Bengal defence because of poor planning and execution.
However, Gopal Das affected two more brilliant save to deny East Bengal.
51 into the match, Baichung's stinging grounder was deflected by an acrobatic Gopal Das to strike the upright and return into play.
Baichung's second attempt missed its mark narrowly.
Towards the end of the game, Gopal Das collected a blinder after Gouranga Dutta crowned a probing run with a low volley that was heading for the target.
Mohammedan's Satyajit Bose would remember this match for muffing up the easiest chance of the match. With Rajat Ghosh Dastidar floored trying to deny Patrick, Satyajit got the loose ball with an open goal staring at him. But instead of taking a measured try, he volleyed the ball into the orbit.
East Bengal continued to hold sway keeping a leash on the speed of the match and took home three points.
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