In a tactical match where chances were rare, both teams cancelled each other out in the middle of the park.
Churchill Brothers played out a goalless draw against Mohammedan SC in a top of the I-League table clash here at the Kalyani Municipal Stadium in Kalyani, West Bengal. In a tactical match where chances were rare, both teams cancelled each other out in the middle of the park, sharing the spoils of battle at the end of the match.
Churchill Brothers dominated possession in the opening minutes of the match but gradually the match evolved into an end-to-end affair. In the 7th minute, Sanjib Ghosh was provided with a golden opportunity to put Mohammedan SC ahead, much against the run of play, but the midfielder hoofed his shot over the bar.
Thereafter both teams played cautiously and chances became rare for either. Clayvin Bernardez who scored a hattrick in Churchill Brother’s last match was held at bay by the Mohammedan defence, forcing him to shoot from distance as the two central defenders closed him quickly. As Mohammedan SC’s midfield play was being matched step for step, the Black Panthers expanded their midfield and tried to play from the wings.
In the 26th minute, Hira Mondal ran clear from the left flank in an attempt to release a pin-point cross but his delivery was cut short. For the majority of the first half, both teams cancelled each other out and often kept play limited in the midfield. In the 41st minute, Luka Majcen tried to volley off a corner kick, but shot the ball over the bar. With nothing to separate the two teams and chances being rare, both teams went into the tunnel on level pegging as the half-time scoreline read 0-0.
The complexion of the match did not change much in the second half. A defending error in the 48th minute could have led to a Churchill goal when Asheer Akhtar slipped in the defending third, allowing Miranda to break free and release a delicious cross for Majcen. However, Roy intercepted the ball and cleared the danger to keep the scoreline level.
Mohammedan SC sat deep in their half in attempts to thwart any counterattacks. In the 73rd minute, Clayvin Bernardez was fouled by Shilton D’Silva. Bernardez’s attempt from the freekick, however, went way over the bar.
In the dying embers of the match, both teams played even more cautiously as chances became extinct, in hopes of at least getting a point from the match and not falling prey to a late winner by their opposition. With both teams holding onto possession and rarely committing bodies in the attack, the tempo of the match slowed down. At the end of the match, both teams shared the spoils of battle as neither team could trump the other.