Kolkata,West Bengal, Sep 15: East Bengal have been crowned champions of the Calcutta Football League (CFL) for a record seventh time-running .
Only a point was needed from the game to win. However, Mohammedan made it hard for Lal Holud from the get go, as a win for them would put Mohammedan in second place in the league standings.
Initially it was a slow start by both the clubs, who were wary of what was at stake.
Mohammed Rafique later had a chance for East Bengal but, he squandered it by smashing the ball well over the crossbar.
The second half began with much more purpose. East Bengal had a brilliant chance after a sweeping move, but Mohammed Rafique’s tame effort was saved by the goalkeeper. Dodoz, tried to do all by himself with a couple of shots from distance, but the Mohammedan man could not hit the target.
The deadlock was finally broken, when James brought down the tricky Lalrindika Ralte in the box. Du Dong-Hyun stepped up and made no mistake from the spot, to give East Bengal the crucial lead in the 72nd minute.
Mohammedan, then pressed hard, but East bengal’s resolute defence with a whole lot of experience at the back held on, to give them their 38th CFL championship in a historic run.
Mehtab Hossain and Gurwinder Singh are the only survivors in the seven years East Bengal have lifted the CFL trophy. The Red & Gold Brigade have also broken their own record of consecutive CFL championships; with the previous best coming from 1970 to 1975, when East Bengal won it in six consecutive years.