East Bengal makes stunning comeback to hold Mohun Bagan to 2-2 draw

East Bengal came back from a two-goal deficit to claim a 2-2 draw against Mohun Bagan in their Calcutta Football League derby on Sunday.

Mohun Bagan remains unbeaten in its last seven Kolkata Derby's against East Bengal.   -  Twitter @Mohun_Bagan

Trailing by two goals in the first 31 minutes, East Bengal made a dramatic comeback to hold Mohun Bagan 2-2 in the first derby encounter of the season. The Calcutta Football League’s most sought after encounter, held at the Salt Lake Stadium on Sunday, failed to separate the traditional rivals in their 154th meeting in the tournament.

The 93-year-old rivalry saw the 59 drawn game though it could well have been Mohun Bagan’s day had it been able to hold on to its the two-goal lead it earned following a fine start.

AS IT HAPPENED

Pintu Mahata, turning out in his first derby encounter in green and maroon colours, pounced on the first opportunity coming his way in the 20th minute.

Mahata latched on to a cross from Arijit Bagui and busted the net with a nice half-volley to put his side ahead.

Ugandan striker Henry Kisekka doubled Bagan's lead by producing a fantastic finish in the 31st minute when Bagui found him clear of the East Bengal defenders with another fine cross. Bagan continued its dominance till the end of the first half but faltered towards the end when Johnny Acosta, the Costa Rican World Cupper making his debut for the red and gold side, reduced the margin in the first minute of the injury-time.

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East Bengal technical director Subhash Bhowmick plotted a fine resurgence for his side after the break as he set the Syrian playmaker Mahmoud Al Amna on a more offensive role.

With Joby Justin joining ranks, East Bengal maintained constant pressure on the Bagan defence, which finally cracked in the 61st minute when Lalrindika Ralte produced a viciously swerving corner. Bagan goalkeeper Shilton Paul just about managed to block the ball from going into the net but his clearance reached only as far as Laldanmawia Ralte, who had no problem in slotting it home.

The equaliser saw Bagan renewing the assaults but the East Bengal defence held on for the remainder of match to ensure the draw. 

The result: Mohun Bagan 2 (Pintu Mahata 20, Henry Kisekka 31) drew with East Bengal 2 (Johnny Acosta 45+2, Laldanmawia 61)

 

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