A 10-man East Bengal managed to hold Jamshedpur to a goalless draw in the 2020-21 Indian Super League (ISL) match at the Tilak Maidan on Thursday.
The Red and Golds' registered their first point this season after four matches. Jamshedpur had plenty of chances to score but failed to convert and turn the point into three.
Robbie Fowler made four changes to the East Bengal lineup. Sankar Roy, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Mohammed Rafique and Jeje Lalpekhlua replaced Debjit Majumder, Surchandra Singh, Wahengbam Angousana and Balwant Singh.
Owen Coyle, on the other hand, made just one change to the Jamshedpur starting XI which won 2-1 against ATK Mohun Bagan. Aniket Jadhav came in for Jackichand Singh on the left flank.
Jamshedpur started well and looked hungry for an early lead. Aniket Jadhav should have scored in the sixth minute when he found himself in a one-on-one situation inside the box but he blasted the ball over the crossbar.
East Bengal received a major blow in the 25th minute when Eugeneson Lyngdoh was sent off for a high-footed challenge on Alex Lima. It was a harsh decision for the Kolkata club as Lyngdoh caught the ball before brushing his boot against Lima's leg.
Stephen Eze came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock in the 38th minute when he attempted a header off Aitor Monroy's dangerous delivery from a corner but the crossbar denied the centre-back a goal.
With a man down, Fowler took a pragmatic approach in the second half as East Bengal hardly raided the opposition's half. Coyle, on the other hand, brought in Isaac Vanmawlsawma on the right flank in place of Aniket Jadhav to add more firepower in the attack.
Jamshedpur completely dominated proceedings in the second half as they created multiple goal-scoring opportunities but credit to the East Bengal backline who stood firm and nullified every single Jamshedpur attack.
The Men of Steel too were down to 10 men after Laldinliana Renthlei was sent off after he received a second booking for a challenge on Jacques Maghoma in the 90th minute.
East Bengal remains at the bottom of the league table and Jamshedpur climbed up to the fifth position with six points from five games following Thursday's draw.