Kolkata, March 5 (IANS) The restart of the I-League was a joyous occasion for the Indian Arrows as they recorded a memorable 1-0 win against Sudeva Delhi FC at the Naihati Stadium.
Shanmugam Venkatesh’s boys fought well even after defender Amandeep was sent off at the stroke of half-time. With the odds stacked against them, they took the lead when Parthib Gogoi poked the ball into the back of the net in the 60th minute.
Arrows’ resolute defence saw off Sudeva’s attacks for the rest of the contest and ensured that they bagged all three points and also maintained the record of zero goals conceded so far in the season.
The standout performer and deserving Hero of the Match was Indian Arrows’ captain on the day, Parthib Sundar Gogoi, who netted the only goal of the match. He robbed Aryan Khokhar of the ball before calmly nutmegging the keeper to poke the ball into the back of the net.
A few minutes later, Gogoi had the opportunity to double his side’s lead but was unlucky as his thundering low effort came off the upright.
The Assamese also dominated the numbers. He was the protagonist in Arrows’ impressive pressing throughout the 90 minutes, as demonstrated by his 20 attacking challenges, the most by any player on the pitch.
Sometimes the forwards tend to just hold up play and bring the midfielders into the game as they make runs but Gogoi made sure that he was always available for a pass, coming short as well to pick up the ball, completing 26 passes with 77% accuracy. He was always a menace to the Sudeva defence, winning three fouls and completing two dribbles.
With 10 men on the pitch for the entire second half and just 9 in the dying embers, the gritty forward was fully committed to his defensive responsibilities, attempting eight aerial duels, two tackles and one interception.
Indian Arrows, alongside title-holders Gokulam Kerala, are the only two sides who haven’t conceded a goal in the league this year. The young guns performed as a cohesive unit in their own third as Sudeva failed to muster any real chances even with a man’s advantage for more than 45 minutes and with an advantage of 2-men by the end of the game.
There were some other standout performers in the young Indian Arrows side as well. Midfielder Vibin Mohanan completed 53 passes with an astounding 89 percent accuracy.
The centre-back pairing of Halen Nongtdu and Abdul Hannan made 15 interceptions, recovered the ball 11 times and completed 77 percent of their defensive challenges between them. Winger Taison Singh was also a busy man on both sides of the pitch, with three key passes, four tackles, 29 challenges and seven aerial duels.