East Bengal close gap on leaders Bengaluru FC

East Bengal close gap on leaders Bengaluru FC

East Bengal saw off the challenge of Mohammedan Sporting 3-1 to close the gap to leaders Bengaluru FC by four points and keep their I-League title hopes alive by jumping to third place after their round 24 fixture at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan here on Saturday. 

Ryuji Sueoka gave East Bengal a 10th minute lead before Joaquim Abranches (40th) doubled the margin after a howler from the Mohammedans defence.

The home side, though, repliedinstantly with Joshimar D’Silva Martins heading one home after seeing East Bengal custodian Abhra Mondal out of place.

But that was their solitary moment of glory as Edeh Chidi (62nd) completed the rout after an offside Sueoka cleverly let the Nigerian go past him and convert into an open net for their first successive win this season.

The win revived East Bengal’s title hopes as they now have 34 points (from 20) compared to Bengaluru’s 38 (from 21) in a seven-match unbeaten run.

Dempo held

Mumbai FC came from a goal down, through Alfred Jaryan’s late goal, to hold high-flying Dempo SC to a 1-1 draw in Margao. 
Playmaker Roberto Mendes Silva (45+1st) put Dempo SC ahead in the first half before Jaryan (88th) earned Mumbai FC a well-deserved point.

Mumbai FC’s thirteenth draw in the season took their tally to 25 points and helped them move up to eighth in the league standings, while Dempo now have 32 points from 22 matches to remain in fourth place.