Tag: U-19 IFA Shield

IFA Shield 2018: Engrossing final on the cards

KOLKATA: Familiar foes East Bengal and Mohun Bagan will battle for the 122nd U-19 IFA Shield when they meet in the final.

The two sides will meet in the ultimate game of the eight-team tournament, which has been highlighted by two-weeks of high class and entertaining football by the some of the finest youth talents in Indian football.

Clashes between these traditional rivals are always feisty encounters and, with so much riding on the outcome, tomorrow’s meeting is sure to be an all-action affair. There is no doubt this will be a memorable occasion for both sides and their fans when it gets underway at Barasat Stadium.

East Bengal thumped Tata Football Academy 4-1 in extra time in East Bengal Ground, while Mohun Bagan edged past stubborn SAIL Football Academy Burnpur 2-1 in Mohun Bagan Ground in semifinals to sail through.

A favourite is hard to pick as both are undefeated in the tournament and have proven themselves to be a lethal attacking force. With the likes of Lalchhanhima, Suranjit Singh and Jhantu Prasad in the ranks, East Bengal will always pose a goal threat but the same can be said of Mohun Bagan, for whom Subha Ghosh, Sourav Das and Koushik Santra have been in exceptional form.

East Bengal coach Ranjan Chowdhury has indicated his pleasure with how the campaign has progressed thus far and remain confident come kick-off that his side will go out and do the business to clinch their maiden U-19 IFA Shield title.

“We are in a very good place, everyone is healthy, strong, fit, recovered. So we are in general looking forward to a good game.” Chowdhury said.

Meanwhile, Mohun Bagan coach Jo Paul Ancheri is hoping they can go a step further this time around, having lost the final against FC Pune City last year.

“I think we are well prepared as we can be for this match. Of course we are facing a very tough opponent in East Bengal and it will be tough for us, but hopefully we can make it a bit tough on East Bengal too,” said Ancheri.

This is the first time when these two meeting in the IFA Shield after it became under-19 tournament in 2015. Prior to this both have met in the final 23 times with East Bengal winning on 12 occasions and Mohun Bagan 6 times. The title was shared thrice and twice the final has been abandoned.

IFA Shield 2018: East Bengal mount a comeback win over TFA to reach final

KOLKATA: East Bengal became the first team to qualify for the 122nd U-19 IFA Shield final after beating Tata Football Academy 4-1 in extra time in the first semifinal played at East Bengal Ground on Monday.

After a barren first-half, TFA took the lead in the 49th minute through Chetan Hansdah only for Suranjit Singh to restore the parity for East Bengal in the 64th minute. Thereafter, both team failed to score the winning goal in regulation time forcing the contest to be decided in extra time where East Bengal held their nerve and scored through Gurmukh Singh (114′), Dip Saha (120+1′) and skipper Jhantu Prasad (120+2′).

The match started at a furious pace with East Bengal dominating possession in the opening exchanges of the encounter and created better chances; at least three times they broke the TFA offside trap but they were unable to capitalize on the opportunities.

TFA gradually eased into the game and looked to catch East Bengal on the counter-attack, but poor finishing proved to be their downfall. They wasted a number of good opportunities to break the deadlock as the two sides went into the breather tied at goalless.

TFA upped their efforts in the second-half and found the breakthrough just four minutes into the session when Chetan easily slotted home from six-yards out to make it 1-0.

Having conceded early in the second-half, East Bengal began attacking with intensity. TFA allowed their opportunity to slip from their grasp as East Bengal grew in confidence.

TFA were unable to clear their lines after repeated attempts on goal as Suranjit crashed home an unstoppable volley to level the scoreline in the 64th minute.

Thereafter, both sides engaged in an end-to-end battle but couldn’t break the deadlock as game progressed to the thirty minutes of extra time.

The teams even failed to find a breakthrough in the first-half of extra time, however, TFA lost momentum after the break and were punished by Gurmukh who took advantage of poor positioning from TFA keeper Raj Mahato to score with a right-footed shot.

Then East Bengal, with Lalchhanhima the orchestrator, took control as TFA faded, with Dip and Jhantu added two goals in just two minutes to sum up the day.

Mohammedan SC go into the IFA Shield opener with cautious confidence

KOLKATA: Mohammedan Sporting Club will be hoping to make a positive start to their campaign when they face ATK in the opening group game of the 122nd U-19 IFA Shield on Thursday at Barasat Stadium. Kick-off at 2:45 pm.

Both have very different objectives in mind for the IFA Shield and the result of this match will go some way towards deciding their chances of achieving those goals. For Mohammedan SC, the aim is simple – the eyes of coach Ananta Kumar Ghosh are firmly fixed on a place in the semifinals and three points against tournament underdogs ATK are a must.

In contrast, his ATK counterpart knows a top-four berth is likely to be out of reach for his charges and will instead be targeting at least one positive result in their IFA Shield debut.

Despite reaching the semifinals in the inaugural edition in 2015, Young Panthers are yet to win a match at the competition. Therefore, they will be desperate to make amends for their failure in the past editions and Ghosh says his side will go into their opener against ATK with cautious confidence.

“I must make it absolutely clear that we approach the IFA Shield with humility and a lot of respect for our opponents. We know what we have to do, but there is no way we underestimate any of our opponents,” he said.

Mohammedan SC face tough IFA Shield draw

KOLKATA: Mohammedan Sporting Club has been handed a tough group at the 122nd U-19 IFA Shield after they were drawn to face defending champions FC Pune City, East Bengal and ATK in the group stage.

The Young Panthers will play the three clubs noted for their excellent youth players at the tournament, commencing from July 5, 2018.

Mohammedan SC face ATK in the opening match of the group on July 5 at Barasat Stadium. Three days later at the same venue, Mohammedan SC will battle against FC Pune City, before ending group campaign on July 11 when Mohammedan SC face East Bengal.

Interestingly, despite reaching the semifinals in the inaugural U-19 IFA Shield in 2015, the Young Panthers have failed to make it past the group stage in last two editions, therefor, Ananta Kumar Ghosh’s charges are eager to change the record.

Although Mohammedan SC has been handed a tough group but coach Ghosh remains optimistic for a good performance from his team.