Calcutta Football League 2019: George Telegraph continues unbeaten run with shock win over East Bengal

Catch the highlights of the Calcutta Football League match between Quess East Bengal and George Telegraph SC from the Aryan Ground.

Supporters take part in a rally ahead of East Bengal's centenary celebration day.

Supporters take part in a rally ahead of East Bengal's centenary celebration day.   -  PTI

Good evening! Hello and welcome to the highlights of the 2019 Calcutta Football League fixture between Quess East Bengal and George Telegraph SC.

 

Goodbye guys! This was Santadeep Dey bringing you all the action as it unfurled at the Aryan Ground. However, stay tuned to Sportstar as we bring you all the action from the world of sports.

 

Player of the Match: George Telegraph's Tanmoy Ghosh

FULL-TIME: George Telegraph makes it 3/3 wins in the Calcutta Football League to surpass Bhawanipore in the league table and claim the top spot. The win against a big team like East Bengal would surely do its confidence a whole lot of good!

 

90+4' GOAALLLLLLLLL! Justice Morgan is the man of the day! He dodges past the EB defenders and a left-footed shot swings by a clueless Rakshit Dagar. Is it game over for East Bengal?

90+1' The GT goalkeeper is injured or is this an effort to steal some seconds from the added time? The referee walks up to him to have a chat and the action resumes.

90' An added time of five minutes! WILL THE SCORELINE CHANGE?

89' With only a minute left in the regulation time, Arun Suresh comes in for the injured Sk Raja Ali. Meanwhile, GT continues to defend for its life. Is the side happy with the scoreline?

87' Ronaldo goes for a shot from the farther end of the post. Laltu saves.

85' And Sk Raja Ali has been made to walk off a minute after he walks in, with an injury, after a challenge on the run from Mehtab.

83' GEORGE TELEGRAPH SUBSTITUTION: Sk Raja Ali comes in, in place of Joel Sunday.

80' Top save from Rakshit Dagar, who gets to the ball first after an attempt was made to get a through ball to Joel Sunday. Except that what could have turned out to be one of the worst howlers until now in this league, in the 33rd minute, it has been a good day for Dagar.

77' A strong counter-attack saw Bablu chase a long ball as Joel Sunday was making his way up in the middle. But Bablu fires it way off target! What was he thinking?

75' Dog stops play for a while.

Yes you heard me right! A stray dog invades the pitch but the commotion at the Aryan Ground scares it off. Bad day to take a stroll in the greens, one might say...

74' Bablu attacks from the right but fails to find Rajeev who was meanwhile rushing high up. The East Bengal defence has been equally tight this evening.

69' A six-man wall in place for a set-piece and will Joel Sunday be able to score? A dummy run from Sunday and Morgan shoots one way over the bar as the ball disappears into the crowd. Rakshit hadn't much to worry about there!

68' Three positive attacking moves in as many minutes now as we almost see a replay of Bidyashagar's last shot. Laltu the saviour, yet again!

66' Bidyashagar receives the ball outside the box on the right end of the post, and waits patiently to go for a shot towards the farther post. However Laltu dives to his right to pull off a wonderful save.

65' YELLOW CARD to Justice Morgan who goes for a rash challenge on Samad.

61' George Telegraph's defensive game has been perfect today as it continues to restrict East Bengal from finding the net.

Reminds one of Mohun Bagan's 1978 CFL campaign, when George Telegraph was the side which stopped the Mariners from claiming the title, staying unbeaten in the league.

57' A long ranger from Samad curls over the crossbar.

56' Third and final change for East Bengal. Former Aizawl FC footballer Brandon comes in for Subhonil Ghosh.

52' Double change for East Bengal: Rohlu Puia and Pintu Mahata IN. Will Mahata be able to create the magic?

50' WOAAAAH! Joel Sunday plays the ball into the box from where Morgan directs the ball to Rajeev Shaw, who attempts a wonderful effort. But the ball ricochets off the woodwork!

48' Bidyashagar chases a long ball and races into George Telegraph's attacking third, but goalkeeper Laltu keeps the menace at bay by rushing out in the knick of time!

46' KICK OFF!

The referees have changed their shirt colours: Pink to Neon Green. Interesting!

 

SECOND HALF

There was a lot of talk going into the Durand Cup that East Bengal would struggle without it's star striker Jobby Justin this season. But with Jaime Santos Colado, Bidyashagar Singh and Pintu Mahata firing on all cylinders, the attack looks mighty impressive. Where is Jobby heading to, you ask? - Jobby Justin free to play for ATK

HALF-TIME: There have been quite a few impressive efforts at either end, but mostly it has been a slow game, with both the defensive units doing their job pretty well.

 

45' That would be two minutes of added time, ladies and gents!

41' Four and a half minutes remaining in the regulation time and what an effort wasted from Subhonil. He could have found his name on the scoresheet but alas!

Abhijit, yet again, dribbled his way into the right post region and as he completed a wonderful pass to Subhonil in front of an open net, the GT defenders had already given up. But he shoots one high above the crossbar.

38' Joel Sundayyyyyyy! Sunday fails to take his goal count to three in the league. Tanmoy Ghosh wonderfully plays Sunday into the box from the right, who ends up making an ordinary effort. Goalie Rakshit did not have to break a sweat.

33' Rakshit Dagar commits a blunder! In an effort to clear the ball, he ends up misfiring it within the box, but thankfully his defenders have got his back. The ball goes out of play and we have the first corner of the match in favour of George Telegraph. Mohan's shot finds opposition defenders who have safely seen the danger off.

31' George Telegraph boss Ranjan Bhattacharyya, who also was Bengal's coach in the last season of the Santosh Trophy, is shouting out instructions from the sideline. Any tactical change on the cards?

29' GEORGE TELEGRAPH SUBSTITUTION: Tanmoy Ghosh walks in for Ayushman Chaturvedi.

27' East Bengal, now, creating a bit of pressure on the opposition defence as it continues to penetrate into the other half, but a positive attempt on the goal is yet to be made.

19' The East Bengal side doesn't seem like the confident side which had beat ISL side Jamshedpur FC in its last Durand Cup encounter. The gameplay has been very slow.

Meanwhile, Joel was successfully blocked by Mehtab, as the ball has been cleared from the danger zone.

16' Bablu! What a waste of an opportunity to establish an early lead. Steals the ball from the EB defence and takes a shot from a position from where it is almost impossible to score a goal. It sails way over the crossbar.

11' East Bengal's Abhijit takes a left-footed shot from yards outside the box. But it doesn't have enough power on it to affect the scoreline.

10' There is a lull in the game meanwhile, with both side's defence cancelling each other out.

7' Another long pass from Prakash raises EB's hopes but Subhonil was a tad bit too slow in reacting as he lets the possession go.

4' Close! Bidyashagar shoots one wide after Naorem's freekick takes a deflection off George's defence to land in front of him. Will he be able to find the back of the net today?

1' And we already have an early infiltration by East Bengal's debutant Ronaldo into George Telegraph's half. The young footballer from Goa rushes up the right flank but loses control of the ball after a while as it rolls over the goal line.

KICKOFF: And here we go! George Telegraph gets the ball rolling.

 

FIRST HALF

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03:02 PM: REFEREE: Tanmay Dhar

03:01 PM: George Telegraph Playing XI: Laltu, Nabi, Ecehezona, Ashim, Mohun, Chinta, Rajib, Bablu, Ayushman, Joel, Justice.

02:57 PM: The flares, fireworks and drums are out. Are the East Bengal fans anticipating an easy victory at home?

02:52 PM: Is Alejandro Menendez considering this match against George Telegraph as a preparatory encounter for bigger clashes in the future? Five of its Indian players have not been included in the playing XI. Does this hand an advantage to a balanced George Telegraph squad?

There is also only one foreigner in the EB lineup compared to three in the GT squad.

02:45 PM: Even Pintu Mahata has been rested for this match.  The youngster had stormed into the limelight when he struck a stunning brace in the Kolkata derby last season. Here's more on him - Who is Pintu Mahata?

02:33 PM: Well guys, the lineup's already in for Quess East Bengal and well... well... well... what do we have here?

Jaime Colado misses out owing to the shoulder injury he picked up in the match against Jamshedpur FC and thus there will be added pressure on Bidyashagar, who has to be at his best today.

Moreover, we have Ronaldo debuting for the side. Social media might go crazy today!

The Playing XI: Abhijit, Tondomba, Ronaldo, A. M. M. Marti, Samad (C), Bidyashagar, Mehtab, Prakash, Rakshit, Manoj, Subhonil

02:27 PM: While we wait for the action to resume, here's something interesting for you- Did you know? Indian cricket legend Kapil Dev had signed a contract with East Bengal in 1992! Here's more on that - Kapil Dev and his love affair with East Bengal

East Bengal will begin its Calcutta Football League (CFL) campaign with a clash against George Telegraph SC at its home ground today.

The Laal Holud Brigade began its 2019-20 season with the Durand Cup. A 2-0 win against Army Red was followed by a thumping 6-0 defeat of Indian Super League (ISL) side Jamshedpur FC.

George Telegraph SC, as well, has had a good start to its season. It won both its CFL matches — against Aryan and Kalighat.

Calcutta Football League: List of fixtures

The last time these two teams clashed, in August 2018, East Bengal came from behind to take all three points. After missing a number of chances in the first half, East Bengal conceded in the 69th minute after Justin Morgan slotted the ball home. The team rallied and equalised through Mehtab Singh before Koushik Sarkar sealed the win.

Going by that performance, and the form both teams are in, we could be in for a cracker of a game!

Where to watch: The match kicksoff at 3 p.m. IST and will be telecast live on Sadhna News and streamed on its YouTube channel.