I-League: Churchill edge past Salgaocar 2-1

Margao: Henri Arnaud came off the bench to score a late winner in Churchill Brothers Sports Club`s 2-1 win over Salgaocar Sports Club in a fifth round clash of the I-League at the Nehru Stadium, Fatorda on Friday.

In a closely-fought encounter, both teams had chances to walk away with full points but after the teams had scored their opening goals from penalties, it was substitute Henri who scored the all important goal just two minutes before the close.

Churchill Brothers first opened their account with Brazilian striker Roberto Mendes da Silva scoring from the spot only for Sean Rooney to equalise for Salgaocar, also through a penalty.

Lebanese Akram Moghrabi and Bineesh Balan stitched nice moves upfront but lack of finishing meant they could not surge ahead early in the game.

Churchill, however, surged ahead when they were rewarded for their persistent attacks as Bineesh won a penalty in the 23rd minute after the striker was brought down by Salgaocar captain Luciano Sobrosa.

Beto stepped forward to take the penalty and got the better of rival goalkeeper Karanjit Singh.

After the setback, Salgaocar got their act together and clawed their way back. Midfielder Quinton Jacobs controlled the proceedings amicably and it was only a matter of time before Salgaocar neutralised the lead which eventually came in the 43rd minute through a penalty that was awarded after defender Dharmaraj Ravanan was adjudged to have handled Gilbert Oliveira?s cross inside the danger zone.

Sean Rooney made no mistake with the resultant penalty.

In the second session, Churchill, once again, was the dominant team at the start.

Roberto Mendes had a good chance in the 52nd minute but the Brazilian could not keep his header on target after an excellent delivery from Denzil Franco.

Salgaocar too had a chance but Francis Fernandes messed up with only the goalkeeper at his mercy.

Just when it seemed that the teams would settle for a draw, Henri showed excellent skill as he controlled an overhead ball from Bilal Najjarine and slammed it into the goal with his left foot in the 88th minute.


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