AIFF Media Team
Pune FC 1 (Mustafa Rehman Riga – 55th)
Eagles FC (Koko Sakibu – 78th)
COCHIN: On paper, it was David vs Goilath. But the might of Pune FC didn’t deter local outfit Eagles FC as the two played a 1-1 draw in a Group A match of the Federation Cup at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Tuesday (January 14).
After a barren first-half, Mustafa Rehman Riga broke the deadlock in the 55th minute to put Pune in the lead. Eagles FC Goalkeeper Jagroop Singh fumbled to gather and Riga gleefully slotted it home.
But Pune couldn’t hold onto the lead for long as Koko Sakibu equalised for Eagles in the 78th minute, much to the jubilation of the locals.
Right from the kick-off, Eagles preferred to attack. They played some quick passes between themselves and had Pune FC chasing on quite a few occasions. They even entered the rival box but were denied by a stubborn Pune FC defence. Their best chance came in the 28th minute but Sushil Singh’s first touch was just that shade too long. This apart, Pune FC Goalkeeper Amrinder Singh also prevented Sushil from getting past him following Gouranga Biswas’ cross.
Eagles also defended well as Charles Dzisah and Govin Singh combined well to keep off Anthony D’Souza and Riga at bay.
Changing over, Pune FC stepped up the momentum. In the 53rd minute, Pune FC Captain Anas Edathodika leapt high to head James Mayer’s cross but Jagroop was equal to the task. However, minutes later, that slight lapse of concentration of Jagroop proved costly.
On the other hand, Eagles were pressing hard. In the 58th minute, Najesh’s free-kick from outside the box was palmed away by Amrinder. They were eventually rewarded in the 78th minute when Sakibu proved his mettle.
Posted on : Tuesday January 14, 2014