Joby Justin salvages a point against resilient Real Kashmir
East Bengal salvages a point against rock solid Real Kashmir courtesy of a Joby Justin equaliser to finish 1-1 on Friday evening at the Salt Lake Stadium.
East Bengal fielded the same team with just one change, Chullova coming back into the first eleven in place of Samad while Kashmir side fielded Krizo from the start who was doubtful for the game. The first half was a battle in the midfield with the Red and Gold brigade dominating possession but failed to open chances with just one clear chance which Brandon failed to slot home from a Laldanmawia cross. Real Kashmir had more open chances in the first half as they went on counters but failed to beat the East Bengal custodian Rakshit Dagar who had a fairly good game after being under scrutiny for below average performances.
Real Kashmir took the lead just after the break within 40 seconds after Lalramchullova put the ball into his own net trying to clear a cross which had more pace than he expected. East Bengal trailed by a goal and went all out for the equaliser which came 11 minutes later from a Lalrindika Ralte corner which was first headed by Borja Gomez into a puddle of legs but was finally slotted in by none other than Joby Justin, who has now 6 goals in 9 appearances in this year’s I league.
East Bengal were in search for the winning goal but the Real Kashmir defence was resilient enough and stood rock solid against all the pressure from the home side. East Bengal was however denied a penalty when Laldanmawia Ralte was brought down inside the box but the referee waved “play-on”. The video replay showed that Ralte was clearly brought down and it was harsh on East Bengal for not having the penalty.
With this draw, East Bengal now sits 4th in the league table with 16 points from 9 matches played. They will face Indian Arrows next on 8th January away at Bhubaneswar. Good news East Bengal fans as Toni Dovale would be available for the match after he signs when the January transfer window opens on 1st.