| Kingfisher East Bengal’s Edeh Chidi celebrates with Harmanjot Khabra,
on Tuesday. A Telegraph picture |
Calcutta: The ‘stroke of luck’ arrived for Kingfisher East Bengal when it was needed the most as the red-and-gold brigade registered a 1-0 win over Salgaocar in an I-League match here, at the Salt Lake Stadium, on Tuesday.
Though, it’s too early to say whether fortune would keep favouring East Bengal till the deciding stages of the competition, but for the moment, Trevor James Morgan and his men would take whatever there is on offer.
What matters most at present is that East Bengal have extended their lead atop the I-League table — 20 points from eight matches — thanks to Edeh Chidi’s 66th minute strike.
Things were looking to drift out of East Bengal’s control as Salgaocar thwarted their much-fancied rivals with their resilience. However, as coach Morgan analysed at the post-match media conference, the rub of the green went in his team’s favour to seal the Goan outfit’s fate.
Much to the relief of East Bengal, Chidi’s right-footer from the edge of the box took a deflection off substitute Collin Abranches only to find the back of the net.
“The game was tight and a close one as well. We dominated in the first half, while things evened out in the second. Nonetheless, the stroke of luck was there just when we needed it.
“In other words, fortune does come to your rescue sometimes, especially when you’re at the top,” Morgan summed it up.
At the same time, poor refereeing stood as an obstacle for Morgan’s men. In the 36th minute, Ishfaq, while charging down the right flank, was pulled and brought down by Randeep Singh well inside the box in what appeared to be a penalty.
Surprisingly, referee Santhosh Kumar booked Ishfaq for play-acting instead of pointing at the dreaded spot.