Mohammedan Sporting registered its first win in the Durand Cup 2023 season after beating Indian Navy Football Team (INFT) 2-1 in a group B fixture here at the Kishore Bharati Krirangan (KBK) ground on Friday.
David Lalhlansanga and Remsanga were the two goal scorers for Mohammedan while P.M Britto scored the consolation from the spot for the Indian Navy.
Coming from a loss in the first game against Mumbai City, Sporting created a chance inside the first 10 minutes only for Lalhlansanga to miss the target by a whisker. Uzbek Mirjalol Kasimov kept creating chances, but Sporting forwards couldn’t finish.
Navy men, playing their first game of the tournament, had the best the chance when Muhammad Inayath saw MDSP keeper Lalbiakhlua Jongte off his line and tried to lob him, but he too missed the target.
The best attempt that the Black and White brigade made in the first half came from Argentinian forward Alexis Gomez off a free-kick, when he rattled the cross bar with a curler that beat Vishnu in the Navy goal all ends-up.
Lalhlansanga finally found his mark just five minutes into the second half, after Bikash Singh made a penetrating diagonal run in and released the striker inside the box. He turned his marker Sagayaraj and placed the ball away from Vishnu to score the first goal of the game.
The second goal came 20 minutes later when a Lalhlansanga assist was finished by Remsanga, who toe-poked the ball past Vishnu to double the advantage for the home team.
Odisha FC secures first win after beating Rajasthan United 2-1
In a thrilling Durand Cup group F match, Odisha FC defeated Rajasthan United FC 2-1 to secure its first win of the tournament here at the SAI stadium in Kokrajhar on Friday.
Odisha showed solidity in both attack as well as the defense right from the beginning to keep the pressure on Rajasthan throughout the 90 minutes.
Rahul and Kartik joined hands to almost get a lead in the fifth minute of the game, only to be saved by the RUFC keeper. Rajasthan, too, had a chance in the 19th minute but Denzell was denied a goal by the Odisha’s defense.
After a goalless first half, the Juggernauts scored their first goal of the Durand Cup early in the second half as Adwin’s corner was converted by Chandra, giving Odisha the lead.
However, within three minutes, in the 52nd minute of the game, the Desert Warriors equalised as Denzell found the back of the net with an absolute bullet of a shot.
In the 54th minute, there was Odisha FC created another chance as the ball from the right flank was tipped off by the RUFC keeper to deny Rahul a tap-in, giving Pungte a rebound, but his shot was off-target.
In the 64th minute, the Kalinga Warriors were awarded a penalty as the RUFC defender brought down Rahul Mukhi inside the box. Aphaoba sent the keeper the wrong way to double the lead for the Kalinga Warriors.
Odisha held its ground against Rajasthan’s attack to maintain the lead and clinch its first win.
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