Mohammedan came back from behind to beat East Bengal 2-1 and end their dream of winning the Calcutta Football League (CFL) Premier Division ‘A’ for a record 40th time.
Johnny Acosta’s strike gave East Bengal the lead in the 11th minute of the match. Mohammedan’s Ghanaian striker Philip Adjah scored in the 86th and 97th minute to seal a memorable win for Raghu Nandy’s men.
Although East Bengal mathematically still have a chance to win the league, in reality, they have drifted away from the title race. With Mohun Bagan playing on Wednesday against Calcutta Customs, a win for the Green and Maroons will seal their 30th CFL title.
East Bengal’s poor form continued as Bastob Roy’s men failed to register a win in three consecutive matches. This has been the worst CFL campaign in recent years for the Kolkata giants.
They started the match by dominating proceedings and picking up an early lead. But in the second half, East Bengal were completely outclassed. They could have lost by a bigger margin had the Mohammedan players been a little more efficient in front of the goal.
Questions were raised over East Bengal’s World Cupper defender Johnny Acosta who was once again at fault for Mohammedan’s second goal. Also with Acosta in their side, the team conceded six goals in their last three matches.
Acosta had an average outing in his third appearance for the club. He scored his second goal in the East Bengal jersey but his performance in defence was way below expected standards. He is yet to attain full match fitness and is getting outpaced by opposition attackers quite easily.
But to be fair to Acosta, he is not getting enough full support from his fellow defenders who underperformed heavily. The lack of communication among the defenders was visible which helped Mohammedan notch two late goals.
With just a match to go in CFL, it is evident that Subhash Bhowmick will pack his bags and leave the club, handing over the responsibility to Spanish coach Alejandro Menendez.
The former Real Madrid Castilla coach has a tough job in hand to mould the side and bring in his style before the I-League.
With a new coach and two more foreign recruits joining the club soon, the Red and Golds loyalists will hope that the team will shrug off the CFL blues and come back as a new side in the I-League 2018/19 season.