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Kalinga Super Cup

Ratings: Saul Crespo, Cleiton Silva help East Bengal FC end 12-year-long trophy drought

Published at :January 28, 2024 at 11:08 PM
Modified at :January 28, 2024 at 11:08 PM
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(Courtesy : East Bengal FC)

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Nandhakumar Sekar, Saul Crespo & captain Cleiton Silva scored for East Bengal FC.

East Bengal FC put an end to a 12-year-long trophy drought by lifting the Kalinga Super Cup 2024 with a thrilling 3-2 win over Odisha FC in the final at the Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar on Sunday (January 28). The Red & Gold Brigadiers actually went behind in the 39th minute, with Diego Mauricio giving the hosts the lead.

However, East Bengal FC hit back with a brilliant start to the second half, as Nandhakumar Sekar (52′) and Saul Crespo’s penalty goal (62′) giving them the lead. Just as it looked like the game was won, a 10-man Odisha won a penalty in added-time, which Ahmed Jahouh converted to force extra-time.

In a tight extra-time, it was East Bengal that came out on top thanks to a smart goal from captain Cleiton Silva that delivers them their first trophy in the Carles Cuadrat era and assures them of a place in an Asian competition next season. Here are the Player Ratings for the game.

East Bengal (by Uttiyo Sarkar)

Prabhsukhan Gill – 6.0

The young goalkeeper was mostly quite sharp in his goal, making some nice saves, but ended up making a silly run away from his area to foul Mauricio to concede the late second goal.

Mohamed Rakip – 7.5

Rakip validated Cuadrat’s trust in him, being an absolute workhorse on the right. He kept the likes of Vanruatfela and Jerry quiet with sturdy defending, and never stopping form roaring forward with the ball and contributing in the attack with his smart passes and crosses.

Pardo – 7.5

Pardo maintained a pretty composed nature, holding together a compact backline and commanding his teammates to be calm under pressure. Ensured that East Bengal didn’t lose their shape and made things tough for Odisha with his key clearances and tackles.

Hijazi Maher – 7.0

Maher was slightly troubled by the movement of Diego Mauricio, being caught out-footed on a few occasions. He did recover with better defending in the second half, but allowed Mauricio to go past him to earn the late penalty.  

Mandar Rao Dessai – 5.5

Mandar had occasional issues dealing with Roy Krishna’s movement, losing track on him a few times. Taken off at half-time for Lalchungnunga.

Sauvik Chakrabarty – 6.0

Sauvik played with his heart on his sleeve, covering a lot of ground in midfield to close down the gaps. Made a number of crunching tackles and interceptions, helping get the ball forward nicely and retain possession. He did, although, become sloppy towards the end and picked up two yellow cards after 80 minutes to get sent off.

Saul Crespo – 8.0

Crespo stood out against his former side and made them rethink their decision to let him go last year. The Spaniard was a brilliant orchestrator from his deep role, brilliantly moving the ball forward into the final third with his smart passes and also stopping a number of Odisha’s moves. Then scored a beautiful penalty that turned out to be the winner.

Borja Herrera – 7.0

Borja had a shaky start to the game, not being able to create much and actually made an error leading to the first goal. But he took the game by its scruff afterwards, creating chances for East Bengal, moving the ball forward nicely and ended up winning the crucial penalty too.

Nandhakumar Sekar – 7.5

Nadha tormented his former team with his smart movement and link-up play on the right, helping create nice chances. He tested the keeper with a slicing shot in the first half, before showcasing great movement and awareness to score an impressive equalizer that kickstarted East Bengal’s comeback.

Cleiton Silva – 7.5

Even though he didn’t get involved in the first two gaols, Cleiton played a key role in helping unlock the Odisha backline in normal time. His link-up play was impressive, as he helped create a few chances and destabilize the Odisha backline with his smart movement. Then pounced an error from Gahlot with brilliant pressing to score a superb winner in extra-time.

Javier Siverio – 5.0

Siverio made the goalkeeper work with a cheeky header, but lacked consistency in the final third. His first touches were poor and the forward failed to create much, being taken off at half-time.

Substitutes

Naorem Mahesh Singh – 7.0

Mahesh Singh proved his quality in his first Super Cup 2024 appearance and made instant impact after coming on in the second half, making a great run and producing a superb assist for the equalizer. Helped bring more creativity and width to this side, forcing Odisha to make mistakes.

Lalchungnunga – 7.0

The India international added a stronger defensive layer to his side after coming on and worked hard to ensure that they got the job done.

PV Vishnu – N/R

Vishnu was able to get into a number of great areas after coming on, but ended up wasting quite a few efforts. Substituted late on after coming on as a substitute.

Sayan Banerjee – 6.0

Banerjee made a few nice runs in the transitions, but unable to score much.

Ajay Chhetri – N/R

Chhetri helped add more composure and defensive sturdiness after Sauvik’s sending off and helped East Bengal sustain pressure nicely towards the end.

VP Suhair – N/R

Put in nice defensive work in extra-time.

Odisha FC Player Ratings (By Gourav Samal)

Lalthuammawia Ralte – 6.5

Although two goals were scored by East Bengal in the match, Mawia was as usual superb with his gloves and saved some crucial shots, mostly in the first half. 

Carlos Delgado – 6

Delgado’s mistake over while finding a touch to the ball helped East Bengal to go past the defense line to equalize the score. 

Mourtada Fall – 6

The captain received two yellow in the match, for which he had to leave the field in the 69th minute of play when the team was behind with two goals to one. 

Jerry Lalrinzuala – 6.5

Jerry looked tired in the second half of the game and lost possession quite a few times and was replaced by Vignesh in the middle. 

Amey Ranawade – 7

Ranawade looked more promising after Fall’s exit and looked to take control in the front end. 

Lalthathanga Khawlhring -6.5

Puitea had a good first half but lacked the intensity in the second half and was replaced by Lenny.  

Ahmed Jahouh – 7

Jahouh again was the mainstay for Odisha in the midfield. He also stepped up in the last minutes of play to take the penalty and also scored it to equalize the score.

Isak Vanlalruatfela – 7.5

Isak had a few chances of creating chances towards the end of second half but he went for some fancy shots to miss it at the end. 

Diego Mauricio – 7

Mauricio kept on running till the last minute of the game and was the most vital part of Odisha’s attack at the front in the game.

Roy Krishna – 6.5

Roy had another silent outing in the Super Cup. The forward rarely looked to have control at the front end. 

Cy Goddard – 6.5

Goddard had a below par game as per his standard in the match. Although he remained busy in the middle, he rarely created any opportunity for the team.

Substitutes

Vignesh Dakshinamurthy – 6.5

Vignesh replaced Jerry in the 72nd minute of play. He instantly was seen creating chances in the middle but unfortunately none of those were converted.

Lenny Rodrigues – 6

Lenny was good with his passes in the middle but got fewer opportunities with the ball to prove his worth during his stay on the pitch. 

Narender Gahlot – 5

Narender entered the field at the start of extra time. He had few opportunities to prove his worth on the field.

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