Mohun Bagan played brilliant football to defeat Port Trust today 2-1. The goals were scored by Lalampuia in 3rd minute and Manju in 63rd minute. Peter Odafe was adjudged Man of the Match. The goals were scored by Lalampuia in 3rd minute and Manju in 63rd minute. Peter Odafe was adjudged Man of the Match. Manju received yellow card today. Mohun Bagan will next play against George Telegraph on September 9th in Mohun Bagan ground.
There was heavy downpour before the match and so ground condition was heavy and Mariners started the match in good pace. In 1st minute itself from Barreto’s pass, Tulunga ran down the right and his center Lalam just could not connect. The goal came within 3 minutes. From a corner taken by James, Barreto trapped the ball and gave a brilliant pass to Tulunga whose center found Lalampuia who placed the ball past goalkeeper giving Mohun Bagan the lead. Mohun Bagan continued to press hard and Barreto delivered some good forward pass to Lalampuia who did not trap the ball properly, thus wasting few easy chances to score. Bagan’s midfield played superbly today with Lalramlua and Tulunga running down the left and right flank. Lalramlua was in supreme form today. Like last few matches, Rakesh Masih was brilliant. After few poor performances, from last match Junior James seems to have got his form back and he also played quite well today, his corners and centers were very well directed. It seems that at last after trying a lot of permutations and combinations, Kareem has got his midfield combination right. Kareem should be given a lot of credit for the way two TFA juniors like Lalramlua and Rakesh is performing and has got themselves set in the first team.
In 20th minute, from an indirect corner, Junior James delivered a perfect ball towards Barreto who jumped up nicely and connected the head but the ball just went over the post. Port tried to made some counter attacks but Odafe and Deepak stood firm and Manju in his new position as left back was also superb. Barreto then got a loose ball in midfield and he ran few yards, dribbled past one defender and tried to pass to Lalam who was standing unmarked inside box but the ball was just cleared by Port defence. Barreto could have taken the shot himself and scored also. Lalramlua also took a superb shot from inside the box which goalkeeper was beaten but the ball just missed mark by inches. In another attack, Barreto gave a pass to Lalampuia who took a powerful right footer from outside the box which was going towards the goal but luckily for Port the ball went out by deflecting off a defender.
In 2nd half, Port scored the equalizer in 48th minute via a defensive lapse though there was a lot of controversy with the goal as Port took the corner about 2 yards away from the corner spot. Surprisingly, the channel who is telecasting live the matches did not raise any question for this goal; however, it was seen in last two matches, they had raised so many questions of the goals scored by Mohun Bagan.
Within minutes after the goal from a center from Tulunga from the right flank, Barreto nicely left the ball for Lalampuia who took a rasping low right footer which caught Gopal by surprise and the ball just went out of the far post, a great attempt indeed by Lalam. In 60th minute, Lalram took the ball down the left flank and took a nice center which Barreto and Lalam could not reach in time to connect and score. Then the goal came in 63rd minute again from a long throw by Odafe. Just before the throw, it was seen that coach asked Manju to change position with Lalramlua and asked the former to go inside box. Again as seen in last few matches, from the long throw Rakesh Masih took a back header and Manju took a timely dive to connect the ball and headed the ball beautifully and scoring the goal. This goal came as a result of practice from coach Kareem. In Kolkata league, Odafe’s long header has resulted in quite a few goals. Then from Junior James’ perfect corner, Rakesh Masih connected the ball to perfection but his head went above the post though the goalkeeper was beaten all ends up.
Baichung and Ishfaq came as replacement but did not have to do much. Odafe was again adjudged Man of the Match, he was brilliant like the other matches. Man of the Match award could have gone to Lalramlua also.
Lalawmpuia scored his 8th goal in the league today and he is currently the top scorer of the league along with Theodor Sunday of Mohammedan Sporting.
CRA needs to work upon the referring standard, and mohunbaganclub.com feels that the crucial tie against Kingfisher East Bengal must not be conducted by local referees whose standards are not up to the mark and most of the referees seems to be unfit like in the last game against Mohammedan it was seen that the referee gave penalty when he was in midfield whereas the linesman standing close to the incident had not raised his flag for infringement.
TEAM: Sangram, Manju, Deepak, Odafe, Habibur, Lalramlua, Rakesh Masih, Junior James Singh, Tulunga (Ishfaq 87), Lalampuia (Baichung 73), Barreto (Kartick Kisku 90).
PICTURE COURTESY: ACHINTYA ROY