IndiaFooty takes a look at some tactical talking points from the exciting Kolkata derby that took place at Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan on Sunday evening.
Kolkata derby reborn
The Kolkata derby lived up to all the hype it has received throughout this past week. Unlike the dull draws we have come to witness in this high profile game, this one was certainly worthy of all the excitement. The score line suggests it was a tight affair, but it could have been worse.
Jobby, Danmawia and Brandon proving to be a formidable trio
The trio of Jobby Justin, Laldanmawia Ralte and Brandon Vanlalremdika constantly put the Mohun Bagan defence under tremendous pressure, especially in the second-half. Their exciting interplay is something the East Bengal faithful will look forward to seeing in future.
East Bengal’s high defensive line
Johnny Acosta and Borja Perez Gomez did well to successfully hold a high line at the back throughout the game, which aided in keeping Henry Kisekka at bay. Henry was unable to make any runs in behind the East Bengal defence and was trapped offside on a number of occasions.
Ball players East Bengal in midfield
Alejandro Menendez’s decision to pack his midfield with ball players – Lalrindika Ralte, Jaime Colado, Laldanmawia Ralte and Brandon Vanlalremdika – with Kassim Aidara providing the muscle, helped East Bengal control this match.
They were the better team, with most of the ball and enterprising in their play. East Bengal pinned Mohun Bagan back, forcing them to only hit back on a counter. The success of East Bengal’s plan relied on making the most of the attacking players who interchange roles, without a target man that can be man-marked.
Kassim Aidara solid in midfield
Kassim Aidara played as deep-lying central midfielder and assisted their defence with aplomb, as Mohun Bagan rarely broke through the middle. The Senegalese midfielder also handled Omar Elhussieny and Shekh Faiaz cutting inside from wide positions and forced Mohun Bagan to shoot from distance.
Mohun Bagan lacked midfield distribution
Apart from a few early chances, Mohun Bagan struggled to create any real goal scoring chances from open play throughout the 90 minutes. Omar Elhussieny, who was entrusted with the responsibility of a ‘number 10’ role, lacked the maturity and experience to pull the strings in midfield, thus starving Aser Dipanda Dicka of the ball by playing the ball sideways, even on counter-attacks. While Yuta Kinowaki was more focused on defence, Sourav Das was also absent in the centre of the park as he rarely took possession, and remained static. The Mariners missed Sony Norde’s prowess in controlling the speed of play and his ability to pick out an attacker in an advancing position.