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Durand Cup 2019: Flawless East Bengal vanquish below par Jamshedpur reserves

19:23 GMT+3 06/08/2019
Jaime Santos Colado East Bengal Jamshedpur FC Reserves Durand Cup 2019
While East Bengal were compelled to field their full strength in the Durand Cup, Jamshedpur were allowed to bring youth players….

East Bengal fans could not have asked for a better start to their campaign in the Durand Cup 2019 as their favourite club kicked off the 2019/20 season scoring eight goals in the first two matches.

After a 2-0 win over Army Red in their season opener, the Red and Golds bulldozed past Jamshedpur FC’s reserve team on Tuesday in their second outing.

Spaniard Jaime Santos Colado sealed the fate of the match within seven minutes, scoring two goals in quick succession. After an eye-soothing free-kick goal in the first half, Jaime showed that he is ready to lead the attack for the club this season.

Alejandro Menendez' stance regarding the Durand Cup and the Calcutta Football League (CFL) has been very clear since the first day. He will be using these two competitions to test his team ahead of the bigger stages like the I-League and the Super Cup.

Accordingly, he made nine changes in the starting XI which played against Army Red. Only Jaime and Brandon Vanlalremdika were retained against Jamshedpur.

Some exciting talents like central defender Asheer Akhtar, who joined the club from Bengaluru FC reserves, were given a debut by Menendez. Akhtar was partnered in central defence by another debutant Marti Crespi who recently joined the side from Delhi Dynamos.

The most exciting prospect in the East Bengal side this season is Bidyasagar Singh. This youth product of the club has been in phenomenal form. In the first game, he proved to be a ‘Super Sub’ as he helped set up the first goal and scored the second goal himself.

Against Jamshedpur, he started alongside Jaime upfront and was equally lethal. Singh scored twice today and provided the assist for Boithang Haokip’s final goal.

The Spanish boss was particularly impressed with this forward and touted him to be the next big thing in the club. If the youngster can keep his head steady, East Bengal may soon forget about their last season’s star Jobby Justin, who left the club for ATK this year.

On East Bengal’s glory day, questions must be raised on the standard of the team which Jamshedpur FC fielded. The reserves squad was simply no match for the mighty Red and Golds.

While all other ISL teams have fielded their reserves squad, most of them have included at least a couple of players from their main squad. The Men of Steel, on the other hand, fielded several U19 and even a U-16 player in the competition.

Questions must be asked of the tournament organisers who had forced East Bengal to field their main team even though the head coach was completely against it. The same organisers wasn't bothered about the quality of the squad which Jamshedpur registered.