Mohun Bagan registered their third consecutive win in the Calcutta Football League (CFL) Premier Division 'A' by beating George Telegraph 1-0 on Sunday. Aser Pierrick Dipanda scored the only goal of the match in the 72nd minute.
Sankarlal Chakraborty rang in the changes for Mohun Bagan against minnows George Telegraph. Sankar Roy made a rare start under the sticks replacing Shilton Paul. Eze Kingsley was supported by Gurjinder Kumar and Kimkima in defence.
Arijit Bagui and Abhishek Ambekar started wide on the right and left flank respectively. Sourav Das, Pintu Mahata and Shilton D'Silva formed the midfield trio with Henry Kisekka and Aser Pierrick Dipanda up front.
George Telegraph coach Ranjan Bhattacharjee chose to field his men in a 4-5-1 formation with Stephen Harry leading the lines. Japanese midfielder Nakamura Reo showed exemplary work rate throughout the game.
Mohun Bagan could have drawn first blood in the seventh minute when Dipanda's effort from a set-piece hit the crossbar and went out for a goal kick.
The first-half was turning out to be a snooze fest as the Mariners lacked creativity in the attacking third and their opponents were happy to play long balls devoid of any purpose.
A defensive lapse from Mohan Sarkar could have handed Bagan a surprise lead but Echezone Anyiche, alias Eche, made a goal-line clearance to avert the danger.
In the 42nd minute, Bagan players appealed in unison for a penalty after Eche pulled down Dicka inside the box but the referee waved away their protests.
After a dull first half, the match was clamouring for a fresh impetus and Chakraborty responded by bringing on veteran midfielder Mehtab Hossain in place of D'Silva.
The first goal scoring opportunity for Bagan came just after the referee blew for resumption when Ambekar set up Sourav Das within sniffing distance from goal. Instead of pulling the trigger with his first touch, Das allowed the defenders to crowd him and when he finally shot at goal, his effort sailed over the crossbar.
It was Dipanda who broke the deadlock in the 72nd minute. The striker peeled off his marker and rose the highest to connect to an inch-perfect cross by newly introduced Tirthankar Sarkar from the right.
The Maroon and Greens tried to force a second goal but had to be content with a 1-0 scoreline. They next face Peerless SC on August 16 in CFL.