ONGC’s win not good enough
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ONGC did their part perfectly by beating Sporting Club de Goa in their final league encounter on Tuesday, but unfortunately that wasn't good enough for the Mumbai-outfit to progress to the semifinals of the 34th Federation Cup in Siliguri. With both teams looking for a victory to keep their chances alive, ONGC triumphed 2-1 at the SSB ground. But they required East Bengal to lose their final encounter to fellow-Kolkata outfit Kalighat Milan Sangha. Unfortunately, it wasn't to be as last year's runners-up registered a thrilling 4-3 win to set up a semi-final clash against Churchill Brothers.
In a match full of drama at the Kanchenjungha Stadium, East Bengal trailed twice to be 0-2 and 2-3 against the qualifiers Kalighat MS, but Edeh Chidi and youngster Manandeep Singh rose to the occasion with a brace each.
Playing without their star central defender Uga Okpara, East Bengal conceded early goals as James Giblee (11th) and Tanmoy Kundu scored in a space of five minutes.
East Bengal, however, kept attacking and got their first goal in the 30th minute when former Air-India striker Manandeep Singh, scored from an Orji Penn cross.
Manandeep was once again in his elements to bring on the 2-2 equaliser when he scored this time from a Chidi cross. But their joy was short-lived as Nigerian Christopher Chizoba helped Kalighat restore the lead in the 40th minute.
There was more drama in store as East Bengal made it 3-3 at the interval after Chidi was fouled inside the KMS box. The Nigerian converted the spot kick to add more spice as the match poised for an entertaining second-half.
In an action replay, Chidi was again fouled inside KMS box and the result was no different as he fired in the winner from the spot, for a superb East Bengal turnaround.