Durand Cup: East Bengal edge Gokulam Kerala FC 2-1 to reach Semifinal

Durand Cup: East Bengal edge Gokulam Kerala to reach semifinal

In an exhilarating encounter at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, East Bengal showcased their determination, securing a hard-fought 2-1 triumph against Gokulam Kerala FC to book the 2nd semifinal spot of the 132nd IndianOil Durand Cup.

Jordan Rhys Elsey and an own goal by Bouba Aminou contributed to East Bengal’s victory, while Bouba Aminou managed to score for Gokulam Kerala. This thrilling win earns East Bengal a spot in the semifinals, where they are set to face Northeast United on August 29th.

East Bengal took the lead by a surprising goal in the very first minute of the game. A corner kick orchestrated with precision by Borja Herrara was headed back into the danger zone by Javier Siverio from the edge of the box that Australian defender Jordan Rhys Elsey flicked brilliantly into the net.

Despite the early setback, Gokulam Kerala responded strongly, displaying a threat in their offensive maneuvers. East Bengal adopted a deep defensive approach and looked for opportunities to counter-attack. Nandha Kumar and Mahesh Singh utilized their speed on the wings to create chances for the Torch Bearers. A chance for doubling the lead came through another corner, but Saul Crespo’s shot hit the crossbar.

Meanwhile, at the other end, Komron Tursunov’s volley soared over the crossbar, and Alejandro Sanchez Lopez’s effort was brilliantly saved by East Bengal’s keeper Prabhsukhan Singh Gill, preserving the Kolkata side’s lead.

Durand Cup: East Bengal edge Gokulam Kerala to reach semifinal
2nd quarter final played between East Bengal FC and Gokulam Kerala FC in the Match no 38 at Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, Kolkata for the 132 edition of The Durand Cup 2023 on 25/08/23 Pic/ Dipayan Bose /www.imagesolutionr.in

As the game resumed, Gokulam Kerala demonstrated more intent in their offensive endeavors, seeking the equalizer. They controlled the midfield and exerted pressure on East Bengal’s defense. Their efforts bore fruit in the 57th minute when Bouba Aminou’s header found the net, assisted by K. Abhijith’s cross from the left. Bouba’s powerful header left Prabhsukhan rooted to his spot.

To intensify the attack, Carles Cuadrat introduced Cleiton Silva. Although Silva had a half chance to score immediately, his side-footed attempt was comfortably saved by Gokulam Kerala’s goalkeeper Zothanmawia.

East Bengal regained the lead in the 77th minute due to an unfortunate own goal. Nishu Kumar’s powerful and precise delivery into the box was unintentionally deflected into the net by Bouba Aminou, inciting jubilation among the local crowd.

East Bengal’s solid defense prevented Gokulam’s attackers from creating substantial opportunities. Edwin Sydney Vanspaul’s long-range shot challenged the goalkeeper in the match’s dying moments. Cleiton Silva had a chance to seal the victory in injury time, but his header missed the target.

East Bengal navigated the rest of the match comfortably, securing a well-deserved place in the semifinals.

FT: East Bengal (Elsey 1’, Bouba (og) 77’) 2 – 1 Gokulam Kerala (Bouba 57’)

Also ReadAFC Champions League 2023-24: Mumbai City FC set to challenge Neymar’s Al Hilal

Also ReadPhalguni Singh’s goal takes North East United into the semifinals

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