Mohammedan Sporting has tried to maintain their hundred percent record this season in the ongoing I-League after coming from a goal behind to defeat Sreenidi Deccan 3-1 at the Naihati Stadium, here on Monday.
The Black and White Brigade ensured victory and all thanks to a brace from frontman Marcus Joseph and a spot-kick from Andelo Rudovic, which cancelled out David Munoz’s first-half strike for Sreenidi Deccan. The victory consolidated Mohammedan Sporting’s lead at the top of the table with three wins from their first three matches.
Sreenidi Deccan opened the contest in an energetic fashion and laid the first blow on their opponents in the 16th minute, when David Munoz picked up the ball after Mohammedan turned possession over in their half. The Colombian forward made them pay to full effect after producing a low drive from range which rifled into the bottom corner.
After taking the lead, Sreenidi Deccan applied more pressure on their opponents, sensing vulnerability in the Black and White Brigade’s ranks. The warning signs were there to be seen as David Munoz put the ball in the back of the net once again in the 27th minute, but his effort was ruled out for a foul in the build-up.
After riding out Sreenidi Deccan’s continuous onslaught, the Black and White Brigade made their way back into the game through striker Marcus Joseph in the 40th minute.
Captain Nikola Stojanovic claimed the assist for the goal as it was his left-footed cross which was met by Joseph’s head inside the box, as the header nestled into the bottom-right corner of keeper Shibinraj Kunniyil’s goal.
With scores level going into the break, it took a moment of magic from Mohammedan Sporting in the 51st minute to turn the contest around on its head. It was Marcus Joseph again with the goods; this time with a humdinger of a strike from 30 yards that left goalkeeper Shibinraj Kunniyil hapless as the ball arrowed past him like a bullet into the top corner.
Chasing a hat-trick, Marcus Joseph found himself in the thick of the action once again in the 68th minute. Joseph unselfishly laid the ball across into the path of his teammate SK Faiaz this time, but Shibinraj was equal to Faiaz’s effort as he tipped the ball over the bar.
Mohammedan Sporting confirmed their victory late in the contest after being awarded a penalty in the 88th minute. Andelo Rudovic; the man from Montenegro, stepped up from 12 yards and made no mistake as he slid the ball into the right corner to seal all three points for Mohammedan Sporting.
The table-toppers take on the Indian Arrows in their next fixture on March 12 while Sreenidi Deccan will come up against Real Kashmir FC on March 11.