Durand Cup 2019: Jaime Colado, Bidyashagar power East Bengal to 2-0 triumph - As it happened

Jaime Colado and Bidyashagar's second half goals steered East Bengal to a 2-0 win over Army Red in their Durand Cup 2019 tie.

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

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's LIVE blog of the 2019 Durand Cup fixture between East Bengal and Army Red. This is Shyam Vasudevan and I will bring you all the action as it unfurls at the East Bengal Ground.

 

So that brings us to the end of today's game. East Bengal will march with their heads held high, while Army Red will look to get back to winning ways when it takes on Bengaluru FC on August 5. Here's Amitabha Das Sharma's match report - Durand Cup 2019: East Bengal snatches 2-0 win over Army Red

90+4' Referee R. Vekatesh blows the whistle and it's a 2-0 victory for East Bengal. After struggling to find the goal in he opening half, two late second half strikes from Jaime Santos and substitute Bidyashagar have led the Kolkata giants to a morale-boosting win.

90+1' GOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAL! Samad Ali delivers a sharp low cross into the box and Bidyashagar taps it home! 2-0 to East Bengal.

88' What a roller-coaster of a few minutes we've had. Army Red was reduced to 10-men after the goalkeeper was sent off for a mindless challenge on Bidhyasaghar outside the box. East Bengal are awarded a free-kick and the Spaniard Jaime Colado Santos, who struck the post in the first half, found the net to give his side the all-important lead.

85' GOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAL! JAIME COLADO SANTOS IT IS! He steps up to take the free-kick and busts the back of the net with a sublime strike. The 'keeper is stunned and Jaime Colado wheels away in celebration. East Bengal now leads 1-0 against a 10-man Army Red.

82' RED CARD! The Army Red goalkeeper Shanoos is sent off as he manhandles Bidhyashagar outside the box. The side has already used all three subs and now an outfield player will have to wear the keeper's gloves! Oh wait, strike that, striker Liton Shil is taken off and the reserve goalkeeper comes on.

80' The Army Red players are going down like bowling pins and we have another stoppage.

78' The crowd is egging their side on and East Bengal are throwing the kitchen sink in search of the elusive opening goal. East Bengal make another change as Bidyashagar replaces Haokip.

75' Referee R. Venkatesh is mobbed by the East Bengal players as he stops play. Army Red's Sushil takes to the ground clutching his hamstring and the ref chose to stop play, much to the East Bengal players' ire. Sushil is subsequently replaced by Herojit Singh.

73' Bikash Thapa makes a sizzling run into the East Bengal attacking third and races past two defenders, but can't get past the lanky Borja. Thapa looks in fine form and looks like Army Red's best goal-scoring option today.

71' Chance of the half! A peach of a cross from the left finds Jaime in the box, but the Spaniard's header fails to find the target.

69' A rebound falls kindly for East Bengal's Manoj at the edge of the box and he tries a first-time left-footed attempt, but the ball zooms into the stands. The ball lands on his weaker foot and he has acres of space, but hurries into taking a shot and the chance is wasted.

67' It's rather cynical and unnecessary tackle and Haokip goes into the ref's book. That's East Bengal's first booking of the game.

Back in April, Bikash Thapa's 61st minute strike had sealed Services' sixth Santosh Trophy title. Full story - Bikash Thapa secures title for Services

64' Right then, Army Reds have made their first change too. Bikash Thapa, who had scored for Services in their Santosh Trophy final triumph, comes on for Alwin.

Pintu Mahata's name rings a bell, doesn't it? He 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?

60' There's a huge round of cheer as Kassim Aidara comes on for Rohlupuia. It's a double change as Pintu Mahata replaces Abhijit.

56' Alert save from the East Bengal 'keeper. Manoj launches a long throw-in and the ball sails goalwards, but Ralte does well to judge the bounce and stave off the danger.

54' The tempers are flaring here. A jab here and a hack there and we've had two fouls in as many minutes. The Army Reds already have three men booked and will have to be slightly more cautious if they want to finish with all 11 men on the pitch.

51' Chance! A terrific switch of play releases Manoj down the left flank. He dodges his way into the box and tries to tee it for Haokip, but a defender gets a boot to it in the knick of time.  

48' Much like the first half, Army Red begins the half on a positive note and surges into the East Bengal box and earns a corner.

46' KICK OFF!

In other Indian football news, Guwahati's Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium and Kolkata's Salt Lake Stadium will host the Indian football team's opening two World Cup Qualifiers home matches. More on that here - Guwahati and Kolkata to host India's first two 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers

It's been an extremely entertaining opening half that saw East Bengal come within inches of of taking the lead on two occasions, but was denied by the woodwork both times. Army Red ha shown a few glimpses of its potent attack, but has largely struggled to cause the East Bengal defence any real trouble. The second half will get underway shortly and we will continue our wait for the opening goal.

Meanwhile, in case you fancy some cricketing news - England are at 275-4 against Australia in the first Ashes Test match. You can follow that game LIVE here - England vs Australia 1st Test, Ashes 2019 LIVE: Burns, Stokes aim to build healthy lead

45+2' That brings us to the end of the first half. The Army Reds have managed to hold the mighty East Bengal to a 0-0 scoreline after the first 45.

45' We'll have two minutes of added time.

43' We're inching towards the end of the first half and Army Reds have made a couple of good-looking attacks down the right flank, but have struggled to deliver in the attacking third.

40' The commentator has pretty much summed up the opening half in one line: East Bengal has done everything but score a goal.

So the Durand Cup back this season and bears a lot of importance given the current scenario in Indian football. The All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel has heeded to the concerns of national team coach Igor Stimac and skipper Sunil Chhetri that the players need to play more matches to increase competitiveness by reviving the Durand Cup and the Rovers Cup. FULL STORY - AIFF to address demand for competitive football through Durand and Rovers Cup

36' CHANCE! A free-kick sneaks past the wall and lands kindly for skipper Suresh Meitei, who fails to bury it into the back of the net. There were a couple of hand ball appeals, but the ref saw nothing, and the defence simply froze. Meitei should have done better.

32' Man, what an intense last 10 minutes we've had here. Two sublime strikes denied by the woodwork, two bookings, but still no goals!

30' NO WAAAAY! Boithang fires a phenomenal curler from the edge of the box, but he's denied by the woodwork! A clever long ball sees him race into the box and he skillfully cuts past his man and aims for the left top-corner, but just manages to find the crossbar.

28' Alwin goes into the book and that's the second yellow card of the game.

25' JAIME SHOOTS, JAIME SCORES HITS THE POST! It was a stunning curling effort that evaded the wall and beat the 'keeper, but clattered onto the right post. Terrific attempt, but simply unlucky that it didn't go in.

24' First booking of the match and Army Red's Sushil picks up a yellow for a jab. Free-kick to East Bengal from less than 25 yards out and this is Jaime Colado territory!

21' GOAL-LINE CLEARANCE! Larindika curls in a lovely corner and Mehtab leaps high, but can't connect and neither can the 'keeper. A defender tries to clear but it takes a nasty deflection, but Mukesh make a fine stop at the goalmouth.

19' That went begging! Jaime Santos it is again as he beats his man an delivers a low cross. The 'keeper can't get to it and Boithang simply has to get a boot on it, but the ball races past him and the so does the goal-scoring opportunity.

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14' Corner for Army Red! Alwin loops the ball into the box from the right, but Ralte clears it away for a flag-kick.

In case you're wondering, this is indeed the same Abhijit Sarkar who was part of the Indian football team at the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup!

10' After a bit of a slow start, East Bengal have completely dominated the last five minutes. They've majorly attacked from the right through Abhijit and Jaime and have had a couple of decent chances, but the Army Red defence has held on.

8' What a chance! Jaime does oh so very well to feign a touch and play a teasing ball into the box, but it gets a touch off a defender and East Bengal has the first corner of the game. Lot of pressure on the Army Reds!

6' Up, up, and gone! Samad has a chance to cross from the right and he has a go at it, but the ball sails into the sky and past his man.

4' The commentator talks about how pivotal Jobby Justin was to this East Bengal unit last year, but sounds a tad upset about the fact that he won't be around this season. Where is Jobby headed to, you ask? Jobby Justin free to play for ATK

3' An exciting opening three miniutes. Army Red made a couple of fine moves into the East Bengal half, while Rohlupuia also lofted a neat cross into the box, but neither amounted to a real chance.

1' KICK OFF! Army Red get the ball rolling

2:58 pm: This East Bengal squad looks extremely strong, but will face a tough challenge from an equally strong Army Red side. Kick-off in two minutes!

Fun fact: Five members of this Army Red team had won the Santosh Trophy this year!

2:55pm: Line ups:

East Bengal: Mawia, B. Gomez, Jaime Santos, Abhijit Boithang, Lalrindika`, Samad, Mehtab, Brandon, Manoj, Rohlupuia

Army Red: Zothanpuia, Suresh M, Sunil B, Sushil Shah, Jain P, Alwin E, Mukesh Kumar, Kamardeep Singh, Yaikhom Randhan, Liton Shil, M Shanoos

Asia's oldest football competition is back and we have a huge game in store! Kolkata giants East Bengal will take on Army Red at the East Bengal Ground this afternoon. The kick-off is scheduled for 3pm and the weather forecast says there's a slight chance of rains. Speaking of rains, can we expect a goal-fest? 

The 129th edition of the Durand Cup got off to a fine start on Friday when Mohun Bagan beat Mohammedan SC 2-0 courtesy of a brace from Salva Chamorro. Here's how that game went own - Chamorro brace gives Bagan win over rival Mohammedan in Durand Cup opener

The group stage of the Durand Cup will be live streamed on Addatimes.