Bali Gagandeep’s early header and Hudson Dias’s penalty saw Delhi FC secure three points against Namdhari FC in the I-League at the Namdhari Stadium on Tuesday.
The win, Delhi’s second win on the trot, helped it to climb to fourth in the standings, with 13 points from eight games so far.
Namdhari, on the other hand, was condemned to its fourth loss in five games despite Sehajdeep Singh’s stunning consolation goal, pushing the I-League newcomer down to 12th, with five points in eight matches.
Former India striker Balwant Singh, better known for his clinical finishing, proved to be the creator early on when his long throw-in was steered into the bottom corner by Gagandeep in the third minute.
Delhi almost doubled its advantage at the half-hour mark when Sergio Barboza set up Balwant at the edge of the box with Namdhari’s goalkeeper Tenzin Samdup out of position. But Balwant’s first-time effort was headed over by a backtracking Saurabh Bhanwala.
Desperate to add to their lead, coach Yan Law brought on more firepower in the form of Hudson Dias, and the substitution paid off as the Brazilian earned a penalty after being fouled by Stephen Acquah near the by-line.
Hudson himself stepped up and converted a cheeky penalty right down the middle.
It took a two-goal deficit for Namdhari to come out of their shell and display attacking intent. While Delhi remained compact centrally, Sehajdeep Singh’s photo-finish from 35 yards out gave Namdhari something to cheer in the second-half injury time.
Delhi travels to Hyderabad next to take on Sreenidi Deccan FC on December 11, while things only get tougher for Namdhari FC as it welcomes leader Mohammedan Sporting on December 13.
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