No Indian club treasures its history more than Mohun Bagan about the team’s recent performance against Dempo SC is a mixed one. Bagan won against Dempo in the last match in Federation cup semi-final but failed to register its win against the defending Champions today as the match ended in a 2-2 draw. Bagan’s lowest point in iLeagues is generally agreed to be this year ( 1 point from 3 matches) before Subhash Bhowmick walked in as a Technical Director. The last match was away from home with Bagan going down 0-2. This evening, Bagan were at home, they were playing a formidable opponent and managed to split points.
That Dempo would commit every fibre of their being to the contest was predictable. That they would be the better side for swathes of the afternoon was not. Dempo, the club that has won the iLeague Cup more than any other, had to rely on Ranty and Cliffton goals while for Bagan it was Muritala and Barreto. Shilton Paul, grossly criticised for his gallary show against Kingfisher East Bengal, saved Bagan from humiliation. But before that – Barreto messed with a penalty shoot out – which will haunt him for some time – and might remind him of last couple of seasons when he missed penalties.
Subhash Bhowmick changed the team a bit – handed over the gloves back to Shilton, brought back Azim, filled up the midfield with genuine midfielders and changed his strategy from 4-4-2 to 4-3-3.
Muritala scored the first goal in the 8th minute from a pass from Nazimuddin. In the 27th minute Barreto was tripped inside the penalty box by Noronha – and Bagan got a penalty. But Kuttimani saved Barreto’s shot.
Azim played really well to stop Ranty and Cliffton until 36th minute. A Shilton mistake became costly as Cliffton scored from a Carvalho pass – Azim failed to stop the move! Azim was replaced by Karan Atwal at the beginning of the second half. From 50th minute to 60th minute Dempo really kept pressure on Bagan defense- and during this period Shilton saved at least 3 goals.
Ashim replaced Gouranga in the 60th minute, and then Bagan started moving up a bit.
In the 75th minute Godwin Franco replaced Cliffton. In the 78th minute Shilton saved a Beto shot – and the ball went to Nicolas Borges – and his pass to unmarked Ranty made the damage for Bagan. Bagan immeditely came back into the match as Barreto scored in the 80th minute.Shilton then saved couple of more attempts by Dempo.
Shilton has been awarded the Man of the Match.
Mohun Bagan : Shilton, Azim (Karan), Dhanarajan, Rahul, Nazimuddin, Jayanta, Snehasish, Gouranga(Ashim), Souvik, Barreto, Muritala.
Dempo : Kattimani, Dias, Debabrata, Pixoto, Carvalho, Borges, Beto, Kalu, Norhonha, Cliffton (Franco), Ranty.
Yellow cards for Bagan – Sk. Azim, Jayanta Sen
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Picture Courtesy : Aajkaal