Dempo beat EB, go atop
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- Published 12.04.10
|MoM Abhijit Mondal. A Telegraph picture|
Calcutta: East Bengal were erratic in the first half and pathetic in the second half in their I-League match against Dempo Sports Club at the Salt Lake Stadium Sunday.
The result was a Peter Carvalho strike for Dempo against the run of play, which ensured them three crucial points. The win took Dempo to the top of the league table. They now have 38 points from 20 matches — one more than Mahindra United.
East Bengal stayed on 21 points, from 19 games, and are now well and truly into the relegation zone with Salgaocar, Lajong FC and Mumbai FC. Sporting Clube de Goa are all but certain to be relegated.
Sheer ineptness in the 18-yard box became the undoing for the home team who enjoyed more possession for the better part of 90 minutes. An Abel Hammond shot, a Syed Rahim Nabi header and an Alvito D’Cunha left-footer were foiled by opposition custodian Abhijit Mondal, who walked away with the Man of the Match award after coming back from a two-month lay-off.
If that wasn’t enough, coach Phillippe de Ridder bungled big time with his strategy after the breather. Abel Hammond, who was posing some problems for the Dempo defence, was substituted and Sanju Pradhan was introduced.
In the 47th minute, Peter Carvalho stabbed home an Anthony Pereira flag-kick as the defence stood stunned. With no Hammond down right, suddenly a team that looked menacing in the first half started looking ordinary in the second.
Dempo coach Armando Colaco’s post-match comments would surely add insult to De Ridder’s injury.
“We started playing freely once Hammond was taken off. It was so hot that I was praying to God that my boys do well in these conditions.
“I am very satisfied to have got three points from this match. They had better possession but we got three points. Also my goalkeeper and two stoppers (John Dias and Cresson Antao) had a fantastic game,” Armando said.
Dempo: Abhijit Mondal, Valeriano Rebello, John Dias, Cresson Antao, Samir Naik, Nicolau Borges (Clifford Miranda, 46th), Beto, Joaquim Abranches, Peter Carvalho, Anthony Pereira, Ranty Martins (Anwar, 90+1).
East Bengal: Abhra Mondal, Nirmal Chhetri, Uga Okpara, Mehrajuddin, Saumik Dey, Saikat Saha Roy (Harmanjyot Singh Khabra, 62nd), Mehtab Hossain, Syed Rahim Nabi (Alvito D’Cunha, 56th), B. Beokhokhei, Abel Hammond (Sanju Pradhan, 46th), Yusif Yakubu.
Referee: Dinesh Nair.
MoM: Abhijit Mondal (Dempo).