In what was a lacklustre match, a late surge from East Bengal saw them secure the runners up position in the I-League defeating United SC with ease...United SC lost 0-3 at the hands of East Bengal in the final day of the I-League season at the Salt Lake Stadium on Monday evening. Second half goals from Abhishek Das (64'), Edeh Chidi (84') and Seminlen Doungel (90') ensured a convincing win for the visitors.
The hosts elected to start with Adekunle Waheed upfront with Md. Rafi on the right and Biswajit Biswas on the left as they looked to end the season on a high.
East Bengal meanwhile employed their usual 4-4-1-1 formation with Ryuji Sueoka in a withdrawn role behind Edeh Chidi.
Both teams had a chance to go ahead before ten minutes. First it was Ryuji Sueoka whose header was just wide after Cavin Lobo put a fine ball in from the right. At the other end it was Waheed who found Biswajit on the left with a good cross only to see him lash it high.
United SC wasted a gilt edged chance before the first quarter ended. In the 13th minute it was brilliant play from Eric Brown as he skipped past two challenges before finding Md. Rafi with a fine ball. But from point blank range Rafi managed to scuff his effort straight at a grateful Gurpreet Singh Sandhu in goal.
Just two minutes later Waheed ended up horribly mishitting his volley as he attempted a strike from the edge of the box after being found by Eric Brown.
In the 37th minute East Bengal had a chance to go infront themselves when Chidi Edeh cut in from the right but his shot was parried by Abhijit Das in goal. It fell to Ralte who tried to hit it on the volley but only skewed it high and wide.
It was East Bengal who had a brilliant chance to open the scoring after the break. Shylo Malswamtluanga darted in from the right and put a cross into the box which was headed out by Seiminlen Doungel. The ball fell to Mama again who completely scuffed his shot.
A similar comedy of errors unfolded at the other end just a couple of minutes later. Waheed had made a surging run on the left before finding Surojit Bose who instead of shooting passes it to Biswajit who scuffed his shot too. Eric Brown who got the ball on the far corner also somehow failed to get his shot right as he tried to sneak the ball in.
It was a freak goal conceded by the Purple Brigade too as Abhishek Das beat Bivas Sarkar all ends up, before his attempted cross was held by Abhijit Das but unfortunately for United SC, the goalkeeper could not judge the flight and could only follow the ball into the back of the net, giving East Bengal the lead in the 64th minute.
It was the Red and Golds' talisman, Chidi Edeh who put the final nail in the coffin as he finished with ease in the 84th minute in a solo effort. Having made the run on the left he made space for himself before hitting a swerving shot that found the bottom left corner.
Substitute Seiminlen Doungel added the icing on the cake at the end of regulation time as he deftly chipped the ball over Abhijit Das to make it 3-0 for East Bengal. It was all started by Chidi Edeh who played the ball to a free Cavin Lobo who crossed the ball over the head of the retreating Bello Rasaq to find Doungel.
The win ends East Bengal's campaign on a high as they secure the runners up position in the I-League.
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