Goals from Balwant Singh and Abdelhamid Shabana sealed the win for the Goan outfit...
Churchill Brothers were the first side to make it into the final four of the 2014 Federation Cup as they edged out ten-men Eagles FC 2-1 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Kochi on Friday evening. Thus the Goan side have maintained their hundred percent record in the two games played so far.
Balwant Singh broke the deadlock in the 74th minute before Koko Sakibo got the equaliser (83') nine minutes later. However Abdelhamid Shabana scored the winner through a wonderfully taken free-kick in the 86th minute after Charles Dzisah was given marching orders.
Stanley Rozario introduced Sudeesh Muttah in place of the injured Govin Singh while Mariano Dias named an unchanged squad which won against United Sports Club.
The Red Machines started on a stronger note as their first chance came as early as in the fourth minute.
Sanjay Balmuchu saw his header go wide of the left post off a Thangjam Singh corner while Abdelhamid Shabana sent another attempt wide minutes later as the I-League outfit kept Rozario's defense on their toes.
In the 15th minute, Alesh Sawant received the ball inside the box and did well to move away from his markers but his shot failed to find the far post as another chance went begging for Churchill Brothers.
Anthony Wolfe had a golden opportunity to score in the 20th minute as all he had to do after getting past Jagroop Singh was to slot the ball home and instead he chose to pass which saw the opportunity go missing.
The Kerala outfit's defense soaked up the pressure but weren't able to test Churchill goalkeeper Lalit Thapa as the score read 0-0 at half-time.
Koko Sakibo picked a Bisheshwor Singh pass outside the box and after seeing goalkeeper Lalit Thapa a few yards off his line, he decided to shot but unfortunately for him, the effort went sailing over the bar.
The equaliser was almost scored two minutes later when Dzisah whipped in a wonderful cross from the left but Sushil Kumar could only direct his header above the post.
Sakibo eventually made it 1-1 as the Nigerian blasted the ball past Thapa after Balmuchu’s clearance off Sushil’s feet went as far him.
Just when it looked like Eagles had the upper hand, disaster struck for Rozario's side in the 85th minute with Dzisah picking his second yellow card in the match for a foul on Wolfe.
Shabana scored the winner from the eventual free-kick that saw Jagroop Singh deep-rooted in his area.
A goalmouth melee was Eagles' final chance in injury time, but Odili Felix Chidi's attempt to chip resulted in the ball drifting wide as Dias men record six points in two matches.
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