Venkatesh, Figueira lead Pune FC to maiden win
On a chilly afternoon, hosts JCT went down 1-2 to give Pune FC their maiden win of the ONGC I-League, at the Guru Nanak Stadium on Saturday.
Pune FC kept JCT at bay for a major part of the match. The visitors signalled their intentions right at the start when S Venkatesh unleashed a powerful kick that found the back of the JCT net.
Trailing, due to Venkatesh’s sixth-minute strike, the JCT players created some serious moves thereafter, but luck was not on their side. Penn Orji finally restored parity — he exhibited brilliant footwork to pierce through the opposition defence in the 36th minute.
Edmar Figueira put Pune FC on top when he dodged past the JCT defence to score their second goal just before the breather. After the change of ends, JCT tried every trick in the book, but failed to find the equaliser.
East Bengal lose
The Federation Cup failure notwithstanding, Chirag United continue to show that they aren’t a team to mess around with. Ask East Bengal. They couldn’t have had a better start to the second phase of the league, beating East Bengal 1-0. Edmilson Marques struck the winner when he converted from the spot in the 67th minute.
Dempo go top
Despite a sluggish display, Dempo managed to come from a one-goal deficit to script a 3-1 win over Air India at the Cooperage. Climax Lawrence, Sunil Chhetri and Joaquim Abranches found the net for Dempo, while ND Opara scored the lone goal for Air India.
Gurung saves Lajong
Anil Gurung saved the day for Lajong FC, scoring in the last minute to help his team to a 1-1 draw against Viva Kerela.
The All India Football Federation (AIFF) on Saturday showcaused Churchill Brothers goalkeeper Arindam Bhattacharya for getting into a scuffle with spectators after Friday’s match against Mohun Bagan and decided not to host any future I-League match in Barasat till security is improved.