I-League: Mohun Bagan goes top with 2-0 win at Real Kashmir

Catch all the LIVE updates of the I-League 2019-20 match between Real Kashmir FC and Mohun Bagan on Sunday at the TRC Turf Ground in Srinagar.

Joseba Beitia (Centre, with the ball) opened the scoring for Mohun Bagan in the 71st minute against Real Kashmir FC.   -  Hero I League Twitter

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's LIVE blog of Sunday's I-League match between Real Kashmir FC and Mohun Bagan at the TRC Turf Ground, Srinagar.

 

FULL-TIME: REAL KASHMIR 0-2 MOHUN BAGAN

Read the full match report here.

90+4' Bagan clears the corner comfortably as the referee blows the whistle bringing the match to an end.

90+3' Higginbotham heads a ball into Krizo's way but Cyrus wins the duel and Kashmir has a corner.

90+2' Krizo and Robertson play one-two on the edge of the box but are unable to find a way through the Bagan backline.

89' Faiaz is brought down in the middle by Subhash who is lucky to get away without a booking for his cynical foul.

87' Sankar Roy doesn't look comfortable in the goal as he receives treatment. Krizo tries to reach for a long ball from the left but Cyrus' challenge is too strong for the forward. 

84' Morante jumps into Robertson's path after Higginbotham curls a long ball into the box. Krizo glances a diving header wide off the post from the resultant corner as Bagan holds firm.

81' Ashutosh comes up with a timely header to clear a dangerous cross from Higginbotham towards Robertson.

79' Close! Higginbotham wins a free kick on the right and whips it in for Krizo waiting at the goal mouth, but the forward heads it just over the bar.

77' Krizo tries to square off a pass towards Robertson at the far post but Cyrus is upto the task to clear the ball away to safety.

74' BAGAN SCORES! Substitute PM Britto gets to the byline after a mistake from the Real Kashmir defence and cuts a cross towards Nongdamba Naorem who smashes a volley past Lachenpa.

71' GOAL MOHUN BAGAN! A powerful throw-in from Ashutosh from the right reaches Cyrus who head it into the path of Beitia who smashes it into the net to give the visitor the lead.

69' Ashutosh gets to the byline and tries to put in a cross, but his attempt is cut out by Subash Singh.

67' Lachenpa tries to find substitute Gnohere Krizo standing outside the box with his goal kick. But the referee awards a free kick to Bagan for a foul on Fran.

65' SAVE! Higginbotham wins another free kick on the right and whips an inch-perfect ball for Robertson who sends a looping header. But Sankar Roy jumps high and right to tip it over the bar.

63' The referee books Cyrus after he clips Farooq in the centre to kill off a Real Kashmir counter attack.

61' Robertson brings down a diagonal ball and plays it to Higginbotham who pulls the trigger but the shot lacked direction and sails into the stands.

59' Fran comes to the rescue of Mohun Bagan after Robertson slices open the defence with a throughball to Naorem in the centre. The Mariners have dominated the ball but the defence needs to be alert to deal with the threat of counter attack from Real Kashmir.

56' Okechukwu and Beitia exchange words after the Real Kashmir captain hauls the midfielder off the ball near the byline. Ashutosh and Katebe step into douse the fire.

54' Shot! Morante wins the ball from Ganie and puts it through for Ashutosh who takes a touch and curls a shot towards the far corner. Lachenpa does well to get down and punch the ball clear.

52' Higginbotham receives the ball in the centre and hits a long ball towards Mason Robertson near the edge of the box. The forwards brings it down well but loses the ball to Martinez. The game has certainly opened up in the second period.

50' SHOT! Robertson crosses into the box as Armand takes a touch and smashes it with his back towards the goal. However, the shot flies over the bar.

48' Higginbotham gives Subhash Singh a pass to chase on the left flank but he full back is unable to keep it in play.

46' Second half begins! Bagan starts the second period on the front foot as Fran frees Armand in the front but Cyrus does well to hack it away to safety.

HALF-TIME: REAL KASHMIR FC 0-0 MOHUN BAGAN

45' Robertson and Higginbotham play one-two on the left side as Robertson races off to the byline but Martinez does well to block his path and the referee blows the whistle to bring an end to the first half.

42' Higginbotham brings down a long ball from the back and takes out Cyrus with just a touch on the ball. However the winger's touch is tad bit too heavy and Sankar Roy mops up the loose ball.

39' Close! Higginbotham wins a free kick on the left and curls it for Okechukwu's at the far post. Daneil Cyrus comes up with a brilliant header to deny his counter part a shot at the goal.

36' Beitia's delivery from the corner reaches Fran lurking at the far post as the midfielder connects well but his header is wide off the post.

35' Subash Singh brings down Ashutosh on the right as Bagan wins another free kick on the right. The referee brandishes a yellow card for the full back. However, Arashpreet's heads away the resultant free kick for a corner.

33' Chance! Fran barges into the final third and floats a dangerous ball at the far post but Diawara is unable to touch and the ball runs away for a goal kick. That is the closest Bagan has come in the first half.

31' Armand is lucky is get away with a warning as he pulls down Sahil in the centre of the pitch. Beitia's resultant free kick is not up to the mark and Kashmir regains possession.

28' Naorem wins a free kick on the right as Beitia whips in a dangerous ball as Daneil Cyrus connects a powerful header. However, Okechukwu comes up with a timely clearance to clear the danger.

26' Aaron Katebe hacks down Ashutosh in the middle and the referee reaches for his pocket to show him the yellow card.

24' The home team wins another corner as Higginbotham whips in a delivery towards the far post. Okechukwu makes the jump but Sankar Roy reads it well and plucks the ball out of the air.

21' Ashutosh races off to the byline and pulls a pass back for Nongdamba Naorem who turns around Okechukwu and pulls the trigger. The shot lacked power and Lachempa collects it.

18' Bagan has been sharp on the counter and crisp in the build up but has missed the killer final pass for the forwards to finish. Kashmir on the other hand, has used the pace of Farooq and Robertson to hurt Bagan on the counter.

16' Bagan wins another corner but Kashmir defence clears it easily. Ashutosh Mehta wins the second ball and crosses it towards the far post but there was no one present and Lachempa collects it comfortably.

13' Fran intercepts a stray pass outside the box and goes for a long-ranger but the ball flies away into the stands. Danish Farooq drifts wide on the left and crosses into the box which is headed out by Suhair as the ball falls for Armand unleashes a stinging drive which misses the bar by few inches.

10' Danish Farooq wins the ball on the edge of the box and plays it for Bazie Armand who wins the home team's first corner. Higginbotham's delivery triggers a panic in the box but Bagan defence manages to clear the ball on the fourth attempt.

8' Lachempa comfortably collects Bagan's corner as Kashmir wins back the possession. Higginbotham tries to lift the ball over the midfield but Fran Gonzalez pops between the centre-backs to intercept the ball.

6' Ashutosh Mehta tries to turn Subhash Singh ainside out but is clipped by the full back as Bagan wins another corner. Joseba Beitia's delivery is headed over the line by the Kashmir defence as the visitor wins its third corner of the match.

2' Mohun Bagan wins a free kick early in the game Joseba Beitia curls in a dangerous ball into the box glanced over the crossbar by Martinez.

Lineups

Real Kashmir FC: Phurra Tempa Lachenpa (GK), Farhan Ganie, Mason Robertson, Aaron Katebe, Loveday Okechukwu, Kallum Higginbotham, Danish Farooq, Subhash Singh, Bazie Armand, Arashpreet Singh, Novin Gurung.

Mohun Bagan: Sankar Roy (GK), Franciso Martinez, Ashutosh Mehta, Diawara, Joseba Beitia, Nongdamba Naorem, Suhair, Leihaorungbam Singh, Sk. Sahil, Daneil Cyrus, Fran Gonzalez

 

Our correspondent Uthra Ganesan previews Sunday's match at Srinagar:

Jammu & Kashmir is in the middle of Chillai Kalan — the 40 days of the harshest winter that set in earlier than usual this time around. Locals call it one of the coldest Decembers in recent years with even day temperatures recording sub-zero figures.

On Sunday, Mohun Bagan would be hoping to ignore all of this, including the fact that it arrives from three home games in warm and sultry Kolkata, when it takes on host and favourite Real Kashmir FC for a shot at going top of the table.

After a pre-season lasting more than five months, RKFC players had to wait till December 26 to play their first home match of the season. That was also the team’s first win for the season following two away draws and coach David Robertson admits the team is looking to get as many points from its home games as possible.

“We would like to use the home advantage as much as possible but they are a good footballing team and will be tough to stop if they get going. But we hope to get a win and go to eight points because it will only get tougher as the season goes on,” the Scotsman said on the eve of the game.

With almost 15 players retained from the side that finished third last season, co-ordination is one area Robertson is not worried about. What he is concerned about, though, is the unfamiliar situation of being a favourite this season.

“We have been doing well in the first half, attack well and take the lead but start the second half under pressure and falter, that is something we need to work on. Everyone expects us to do as well or better than the third position last year so there is that pressure for the first time for the club. But last year we had five points from four games while we have the same from three games this time so I think we are doing better,” he added.

The addition of Kallum Higginbotham has enhanced the attacking flair of the team while the defence, marshalled by captain Loveday Enyinnaya and Muhammed Hammad, needs to get tighter. With snowfall on the eve of the game and more expected on matchday, Mohun Bagan is likely to feel the chill despite an early 11.30 am start.

Currently third and having played an extra game, Bagan arrived in the city a day earlier to get accustomed. Coach Kibu Vicuna would be hoping new signing Senegalese Papa Babacar Diawara teams up well with the current top-scorer, Fran Gonzalez but the former is unlikely to start the game.

The second match of the day will see Indian Arrows play host to ninth-placed NEROCA. Arrows, which is the developmental side of the All India Football Federation, comes into the tie on the back of a last-gasp 2-1 win over Churchill Brothers. NEROCA, on the other hand, played out a tie with defending champion Chennai City FC in its previous game.

 

The match will be broadcast live on D Sports and streamed on Jio TV from 11.30 am onwards.