It was a close game that saw both sides net in the first period with SC East Bengal vs Jamshedpur FC ending in a 1-1 stalemate in the 3rd game of the ISL. Either side nullified the other in an intense tactical battle.
Jose Manuel Diaz fielded a vintage 4-4-2 setup, handing Lalrinliana Hnamte and Hira Mondal their ISL debuts for East Bengal. Owen Coyle put forward quite a familiar look, naming his new attacking duo Jordan Murray and Greg Stewart among the subs.
SC East Bengal and Jamshedpur FC both scored from set-pieces. Croatian centre-half Franjo Prce (17′) bagged a lovely opener for the Red and Golds. At the other end, skipper Peter Hartley (45+3′) levelled just before the halftime whistle for the Men of Steel.
SC East Bengal 1-1 Jamshedpur FC
The opening stages of the games witnessed 2 youngsters in particular grabbing viewers’ attention. For Jamshedpur, Boris Singh was placed in an attacking role and was quick to make an impact. Making his ISL debut, Hnamte fired a powerful effort on target early for the Kolkata outfit.
17 minutes later, it was centre-half Franjo Prce who opened the scoring. Bikash Jairu dinked in a swinging cross from the corner which keeper Rehenesh TP managed to push away. Forward Antonio Perosevic retrieved and Hnamte picked it up to lay it off for Prce. The defender’s back volleyed effort ended up in the back of the net.
The Men of Steel responded by having Nerijus Valskis move on to apply pressure up front. The tactic was almost successful when Valskis was a whisker away from scoring. Around 30 mins or so, he dragged his shot wide, grazing the post while going out of play.
It was not until a few moments before half-time that Jamshedpur drew level. Skipper and centre-back Peter Hartley capitalized on a defensive error by Bengal to make it 1-1. Alex Lima’s corner saw Valskis guide it on for his captain who seemed to shoulder the ball past Arindam Bhattacharya.
Coyle’s side proved to be solid in the second period, giving viewers glimpses of their attacking ability. Nonetheless, they were in need of quality in the final third.
Diaz’s men, on the other hand, came away with 1 point on his opening night of ISL football. The Red & Gold Brigade displayed signs of improvement and are looking more determined this term.
Coming up next, SC East Bengal are set to take arch-rivals ATK Mohun Bagan in a Kolkata derby. The tie will be played at the very same ground, Tilak Maidan, on Saturday.
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