FC Goa defeated East Bengal 2-1 in the Indian Super League (ISL) at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Wednesday. Brandon Fernandes and Edu Bedia after Cleiton Silva’s equaliser to help FC Goa ended their search for a first ISL win in the city.

Even though East Bengal started their first ISL game at home with attacking intent, it was FC Goa who scored first. Alvaro Vazquez’s quick pass and Brandon Fernandez’s quick thinking helped FC Goa take the lead in the 7th minute itself.

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Four minutes later, Alex Lima came close to answering the goal in from a free-kick but his effort found just the side netting.

In the 20th minute, Brandon sent down on left flank again and found Redeem Tlang with a beautiful cross. But the pace of the pass was such that
Tlang couldn’t direct his deflection goalwards.

FC Goa players were pressured by a couple of East Bengal attacks, started to keep the ball and string together intricate passes.

At the end of the first half, FC Goa were more comfortable on the ball, passing it around with ease. East Bengal, on the other hand, weren’t able to find the tempo of the game.

East Bengal started the second half on a positive note, coming out with two changes – Naorem Singh and Sarthak Golui – as they started with a different kind of energy.

In the 57th minute Alex Lima tried an outrageous attempt from the edge of the penalty box after Suhair started a counter-attack from the right.

The pressure was building from East Bengal as Jerry Lalrinzuala got the ball in his own half and darted down the left, aided by a one-two with
Naorem, to find Suhair with and brilliant grounded curling pass. Suhair got to the ball ahead of Dheeraj Singh in the FC Goa goal and was brought down by the keeper. The referee pointed to the penalty spot as Cleiton Silva converted calmly in the 64th minute.

Edu Bedia came close to getting the lead back from the corner in the 73rd as his curled effort was pushed over the bar by Kamaljit at the last minute.

Noah Sadaoui came on and immediately started terrorising the East Bengal defence. Bedia got a chance from a dangerous area to hit a free-kick but his effort in the 83rd minute was just wide.

With the clock ticking down to full-time, Bedia gave one last push for a goal. He got a free-kick just meters from the mid-line and he floated it at the far post. Noah tried to get a touch but it was enough to get Kamaljit miss the bounce and the ball crept in. A goal with the last kick of the match.

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By Dipak

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