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Salva brace on Mohun Bagan debut

Mohun Bagan started their 2019-20 season on a winning note

By Arindam Bandyopadhyay in Calcutta
  • Published 3.08.19, 2:35 AM
  • Updated 3.08.19, 2:35 AM
  • a min read
Salva Chamorro, playing his first match in Bagan colours, scored both the goals. Telegraph

Mohun Bagan started their 2019-20 season on a winning note.

They beat Mohammedan Sporting 2-0 in the opening match of the Durand Cup at the Salt Lake Stadium on Friday. Salva Chamorro, playing his first match in Bagan colours, scored both the goals.

From the very first minute, Bagan looked composed and well prepared. They got the goal as early as in the second minute. Joseba Beitia’s free-kick found Chamorro inside the box and his header hit the target.

The early goal gave Bagan confidence. Spaniard Joseba Beitia controlled the midfield well, while Chamorro, Alexander Romario Jesuraj and Nongdamba Naorem made it difficult for the Mohammedan Sporting defenders.

Bagan doubled their lead in the 21st minute. This time, Ashutosh Mehta’s centre found Chamorro and the Spanish striker’s header gave Mohammedan Sporting goalkeeper Shubham Roy hardly a chance to move.

Bagan played an eye-soothing passing game throughout. They never tried anything spectacular and stuck to the basics. It showed that pre-season training under coach Kibu Vicuna had not gone waste.

“It’s important that we communicate well on the field,” Vicuna said at the post-match media conference.

Fran Morante was leading Bagan defence with Gurjinder Kumar. Senior pro Dhanachandra Singh did a lot of running down the left flank.

Bagan could have scored another in the first half but Roy made a smart save.

Mohammedan Sporting also got a chance a minute before half-time but Bagan goalkeeper Shilton Paul was equal to the task.

After the change of ends, Vicuna made a couple of changes. Fran Gonzalez came in for Morante in the 59th and Dhanachandra was replaced by Imran Khan six minutes later. Mohammedan Sporting got two chances but Tirthankar Sarkar and Kouassi failed to convert those.

Mohammedan Sporting coach Subrata Bhattacharya started with Mudde Musa in front of the four-man defence but he couldn’t stop Bagan’s free-flowing game.

In the last 20 minutes Bagan footballers looked tired but Mohammedan Sporting players failed to capitalise on it.

This win will definitely give confidence to Bagan. Chamorro was the cynosure in the first match. Not only he scored a brace, he showed, he can hold the ball when needed. He also fell back to help the midfield.

Chief minister Mamata Banerjee inaugurated the tournament.