Naorem Mahesh Singh scored two fine goals to help SC East Bengal down a strong FC Goa 2-1 in an Indian Super League fixture at Bambolim on Wednesday and secured its first win of the season.
The new Spanish coach Mario Rivera proved lucky for East Bengal, which secured its first win after remaining winless for 11 matches since starting its campaign. This also saw the Kolkata side (tallying nine points from 12 matches) moving a rung up in the standings by nudging aside NorthEast United FC and thereby ending its prolonged stay at the bottom.
East Bengal did well utilising the chances in the chances and secured the winning lead in the first half. FC Goa had the lion’s share of the ball possession but it fell behind when it came to availing the goal scoring opportunities.
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Naorem Mahesh Singh opened the scoring for East Bengal in the ninth minute as the Goa captain, Edu Bedia, made the cardinal error of slipping a back-pass and allowing the East Bengal forward a free run inside the box. Mahesh gladly accepted the gift and finished with a rasping grounder and beat the opposition goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh.
Goa found the equaliser in the 37th minute off a nice combination between its Spanish attackers Jorge Ortiz and Alberto Noguera.
The Goa attack built up on the right flank as Ortiz released a nice through pass for Noguera to finish with an angular chip that beat East Bengal ‘keeper Arindam Bhattacharya all ends up. East Bengal hung on for another opportunity which came in the 42nd minute when Mahesh showed great opportunism in intercepting a long diagonal pass from the young Goa defender Anwar Ali.
The East Bengal forward moved in unmarked and fired a powerful left-footer as the ball hit the underside of the crosspiece and bounced across the goal-line to secure the precious lead.
The result: FC Goa 1 (Noguera 37) lost to SC East Bengal 2 (Mahesh 9, 42)