I-League: Spirited Real Kashmir go down 0-1 against Mohun Bagan

t was Real Kashmir that had first real chance in the game when Tamang’s free-kick in the 18th minute saw defender Mason Robertson meet the ball first with his head only to lob it over the post.

ABID KHAN
Srinagar, Publish Date: Nov 20 2018 11:25PM | Updated Date: Nov 20 2018 11:25PM
I-League: Spirited Real Kashmir go down 0-1 against Mohun BaganPhoto: Aman Farooq/ GK

The 70th minute strike by Dipanda Dicka was enough as Kolkatta giants Mohun Bagan beat spirited hosts Real Kashmir FC 1-0 in the match of the I-League at jam-packed TRC Turf Ground here on Tuesday.

It was another day in office for Real Kashmir FC coach David Robertson where he saw dominating the things and having most of the possessions and still ended up on the losing side. Lack of finishing and some clever defending by Mohun Bagan denied the I-League debutants win over Kolkatta football powerhouse.

As expected both coaches took the opportunity to give first starts of the season to a few players. Real Kashmir handed first starts to as many as three players. Midfielder Khalid Qayoom and defender Abhash Thapa replaced Farhan Ganie and Brian Mascarenhas respectively. Also, Nagen Tamang was positioned as extra midfielder in place of defender Muhammad Hammad. Mohun Bagan opted for just one change, giving defender Dalraj Singh a start in place of Kim Kima.

On a sunny November day, more than capacity crowd surrounded the play field to watch the big name. Despite energized start to the game both sides were unable to dominate things with pendulum shifting from one end to other. Though Real looked dangerous at times, but Mohun Bagan were equally good in denying them.

It was Real Kashmir that had first real chance in the game when Tamang’s free-kick in the 18th minute saw defender Mason Robertson meet the ball first with his head only to lob it over the post. Bagan got their first chance in the 43rd minute, when Danish Farooq brought Cameroonian Dicka down in a dangerous position outside the Real Kashmir box. Ugandan Henry Kisseka’s effort missed Real Kashmir post by a whisker getting lot of applause from the cheering crowd.

Unlike first half, second half was full of action with both sides looking desperate for that all important opening goal. Early in the half, Real pressed well to create disturbance in Mohun Bagna defense. However, everything settled down once Bagan slowed the pace of the game. In the 53rd minute, Sourav Das for Mohun Bagan penetrated past three Real Kashmir players into the box but could not make much headway. On the other side Real Kashmir responded well with Gnohere Krizo’s long-range just missing the Bagan post.

Dipanda Dicka saw his 60th minute header going just wide after Abhishek Ambekar had put in a cross from the left flank. However, Cameroonian was not to be denied as he struck in 70th minute with another header to give Bagan the lead.  It was Kisseka who got hold of the ball on the left flank and found his strike mate in between Kashmir defenders Ravanan and Loveday with a wonderful cross. Dicka made no mistake with his header slotting the ball into the back of the net, wrong-footing keeper Bilal in the process.

Kisseka himself then got a chance to double the lead in the 78th minute, when after combining brilliantly with the goal scorer Dicka. However, it was Mason who denied the Bagan forward the goal scoring opportunity.

As always, Robertson tried everything within his capacity to score that elusive goal. He brought Brian Mascarenhas at left wing-back for more purposeful crosses as well Nadong Bhutia in the strike force along with Farhan Ganie in midfield. Like last game he pushed Mason forward and the defender really made like difficult for the Mohun Bagan defense. 

Ultimately, the hosts emerged as the losing side with the final socre 0-1. With this win Mohun Bagan have jumped to third place on points table with eight points and Real Kashmir continue to stay at seventh place with four points from four games.

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