Arthur Papas' side threatened to complete a remarkable comeback but their Kolkatan opponents were able to see off their onslaught and secure all three points..Pailan Arrows were beaten 2-3 against Mohun Bagan in an I-League encounter at the Kalyani Stadium but not before they nearly pulled off a stunning fightback after going 3-0 down in the opening 20 minutes.
Aibor Khongjee struck first for the visitors before Tolgay Ozbey's quick-fire brace gave the Kolkatans a comfortable lead with only 20 minutes played. Shaiju Mon pulled one back for Pailan Arrows before half time while Semenien Doungel's goal soon after the break restored hope for the hosts.
Mohun Bagan took the game by the scruff of the neck in the opening exchanges and absolutely dominated proceedings. Khonjee's headed goal in the 5th minute gave them a well deserved lead. The visitors continued to dictate play and Tolgay's strike in the 19th minute from the edge of the box extended their advantage.
The 26 year old Australian then added another goal in the very next minute. Following a corner kick, the ball was chipped back into the box by Quinton Jacobs' and Tolgay was on hand to latch on to it and divert it into the back of the net. The Mariners then took their foot off the gas while the hosts were still reeling from Tolgay's double and the game drifted into a state of monotony with neither side creating much.
However, the hosts gave Karim Bencherifa and his men something to think about towards the end of the first half when Shaiju Mon pulled a goal back. Dhanpal Ganeshan played a through ball for Mon in the 41st minute and the midfielder obliged by converting his side's best chance of the opening period.
Buoyed by their goal just before the half time whistle, Pailan emerged for the second period optimistically. They immediately dominated play and performed at a higher intensity. Their efforts didn't go unrewarded for long as Doungel scored their second goal in the 49th minute.
Once again, a goal had changed the pattern of the game. Instead of pushing on for the equalizer with the momentum on their side, Pailan induldged in another slow period in the game, perhaps brought on by the humid conditions. The heat was enough to even warrant a drinks break in the middle of the half.
Bagan switched their system from a 4-4-2 formation to a 4-3-3 formation as Syed Nabi slotted in at right-back. The visitors didn't create any chances of note for the rest of the game with Denson Devadas and Jewel Raja in particular putting in below par performances.
Pailan created a few chances in search of an equalizer and their best one came in the 86th minute when Narayan Das's fine effort forced Arindam Battacharya into an equally good save.
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