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Bagan slain, then Mumbai? Spirited NorthEast United gets off to a good start under Khalid Jamil


Federico Gallego and Luis Machado were the scorers as NorthEast United beat Bagan on Tuesday…

Teams playing against ATK Mohun Bagan shouldn’t be too happy to enter the break without conceding a goal. That’s because all but one of Bagan’s goals came in the second half.

Bagan is finishing their games well and with the second best defense in the league taking care of the opposition forwards, it is no surprise that they are second on the table after 13 games, only behind Mumbai City.

But on Tuesday, NorthEast United not only dealt with the Bagan attack that featured Roy Krishna and David Williams, but also violated their defense twice.

Luis Machado and Federico Gallego made their presence felt and got on the scoresheet to help Khalid Jamil win two games in two since taking over from Gerard Nus earlier this month.

In the first half, NorthEast had a few good chances but they failed to convert them. It was more worrying for the Highlanders as they needed to get off to a good start against the Mariners who were a “second half team”.

After the break, NorthEast tied Bagan in all areas of the pitch and there was a flow to their game. It should be noted that Bagan had to replace David Williams after an injury to the Australian. This injury affected the Bagan incursions.

Although Manvir Singh disturbed Nim Dorjee Tamang on several occasions, Bagan struggled to assert his chances. Tamang produced a moment of brilliance as he made a crucial clearance over the goal line in the second half.

After the game Jamil said: “I just told my players that the concentration should be good and I asked them to play their natural game. They did what I told them to do. ”

Both teams went and NorthEast looked more dangerous in the final third. However, they also received some help that they did not ask for from the referee.

First, Luis Machado broke into Tiri and sent him to the ground as he dribbled into the box and beat the keeper to open the scoring. The goal was taken very well but there was a clear fault during the preparation for which the linesman raised his flag. The referee canceled it and let the goal stay.

To add to Habas’ frustration, goalkeeper Roy Chowdhury failed to put the ball into the box and instead knocked Krishna down, but the referee and linesman awarded a goal kick instead. of a penalty.

Krishna found the equalizer and ended his scoring drought after guiding a brilliant Carl McHugh through the ball into the net from inside the box.

There was of course bad refereeing, but it wasn’t a strong enough excuse to dismiss the game. The Highlanders continued as Bagan looked less likely to score as the game progressed.

And then the magic happened in the 81st minute. Gallego picked up the ball on the left flank, dribbled inside, made room for a shot from the edge of the box, and completed a magnificent effort in the lower right corner of the net.

Bagan’s famous defense could only stand and watch the player do it all in seconds. It was the spark that was missing in NorthEast. It was just a reward because NorthEast was continually testing Bagan’s defense.

Kassa Camara also tested Arindam Bhattacharya from afar while Mashoor Shareef saw his head peel off the woodwork. In fact, the defender could have had a brace as he watched his effort from a corner miss the target by a few inches.

Khalid Jamil’s side are tied on points with fourth-placed Hyderabad and will next face league leaders Mumbai City. With two wins in two games, the Highlanders will have great confidence ahead of this crucial game.