Lalchwanhima and Deepak Tangri were on the score sheet for the Red and Gold and Green and Maroons respectively…

Two arch-rivals East Bengal and Mohun Bagan faced each other in the U-18 I-League derby at the Mohun Bagan Ground today. The match ended in a 1-1 stalemate as both sides shared a point each and it did not do any favours for the Red and Gold youngsters in their U-18 campaign.

East Bengal opened their scoring in the 22nd minute from Mizo boy Lalchwanhima who thrashed a cross into the far post from Yami Longvah. It was a solid goal and the Green and Maroon defense stood still. The Red and Gold could have extended their lead as Mehtab Singh scored from a free-kick in the 39th minute only to find his goal dismissed by the referee. The referee Ravindra Thapliyal took four long minutes to review the goal after initially allowing it, reasoning that the free-kick which was awarded was hurriedly taken. This led to uproar among the East Bengal faithful in the stands.

Mounted police had to intervene to keep the situations under control as players from both teams were seen arguing with the referee over his decision. Later the match commissioner Bikash Mukherjee said, “The goal was dismissed as the free-kick was taken before the referee had blown the whistle.”

The second half saw the home team pressing for an equalizer. The Mohun Bagan colts eventually succeeded in levelling the score with a superb strike from Deepak Tangri in the 88th minute of the match. Mohun Bagan supporters who were quite till that time were celebrating and it seemed that they had won the match.

The Green and Maroon fans rushed to the ground immediately after the final whistle. They were seen running towards the stands where the East Bengal fans were cheering. Noticing the situation going out of hand, the mounted police chased the Bagan fans back. East Bengal fans lead by Ultras in the meantime started pelting stones into the ground. They were also seen hurling torches into the ground. No one was hurt as police brought things under control but the ugly scenes left a bad taste in the mouth especially with this being an age-group tie. This is not the first time that such an incident took place in a derby. Last season as well there were instances of crowd trouble in the U’18 derby.

 Report by Khel Now Correspondent Kushankur Rony Rakshit. Sports passionate and content writer. He is big football and cricket fan.