Mohammedan Sporting Club put in a stellar second-half performance to blank Peerless Sports Club 5-2 on Saturday. The win took Mohammedan SC’s tally to 9 points from 4 games.
The Black Panthers squandered a host of chances, looked shaky in defense and needed a special effort from Aser Pierrick Dipanda Dicka to come from behind and see off a Peerless side who played attractive football at Barasat Stadium.
Going into the game, coach Biswajit Bhattacharya named an unchanged side for the third straight game with goalkeeper Sankar Roy making a return to the match day squad.
The Black Panthers began the better of both sides and orchestrated many moves but missed goal scoring opportunities whenever they approached Peerless’ final third.
While Mohammedan SC pressed high up, opponents Peerless managed to take the lead against the run of the play at the other end. Sukhwinder Singh capitalized on a defensive error to beat Mohammedan SC custodian Rashid Nalakath from Rahim Nabi’s pass in the 18th minute.
Having conceded, Mohammedan SC began attacking with intensity through Diapnda, Jiten Mumru, Dipendu Dowary and Shekh Faiaz, but rivals Peerless managed to hold on defending deep as the first half ended 1-0.
Needing a goal, Mohammedan SC came out all guns blazing in the second half as they attacked by pushing high up. The pressure paid off as the Black Panthers finally restored the parity six minutes into the session. Dowary held off a defender on the left flank and floated in a cross to the far post finding Jiten to head past Peerless keeper Surjay Pariyar.
The Black Panthers stepped up the tempo after the goal and attacked the rival goal ferociously going close on a few occasions.
Mohammedan SC’s pressure yielded another goal seven minutes later when Diapnda got on the score-sheet from Dowary’s pass to put the Black Panthers into the lead.
Mohammedan SC, thereafter, continued to dominate the proceedings and added their third through Dipanda in the 69th minute.
Meanwhile, on a few occasions Peerless created anxious moments for the Mohammedan SC defense marshaled around skipper Rana Gharami, but they lacked the cutting edge to stage a comeback.
With Mohammedan SC cruising, the confidence of the players understandably soared and Dowary made it four in the 80th minute from Faiaz’s pass.
However, Peerless kept fighting an uphill battle and were rewarded for their efforts when their Nigerian striker Francis Oneyama pulled a goal back in the very last minute of the regulation time.
However, just when the game appeared to be ending with the scoreline unchanged, Dipanda headed home off a Jiten Mumru cross in injury time to complete his first hat-trick in Kolkata.
(Mohammedan Sporting Club)