Pune: I-League champions Salgaocar were held to a goalless draw by Mumbai FC but Prayag United rode on Joshimar Dasilva`s strike to beat Chirag United Kerala 1-0 in their respective Federation Cup matches on Sunday.
While the likes of Ryuji Seoka and Chidi Edeh failed to find the net for Salgaocar despite trying everything, Joshimar sealed the issue for Prayag when he scored off a rebound on the 17th minute at the Balewadi Sports Complex.
With Seoka partnering Chidi upfront, Rocus Lamare and Mehrajuddin Wadoo did all the hardwork for Salgaocar in the midfield.
Mehraj played all over while Rocus caught the eye as he fed Ishfaq Ahmed and Chidi on a number of occasions.
On the other hand, the Mumbai FC defence stayed as stubborn as ever, Kingsley Chioma and Faisal Rehman, the two central defenders not giving the Salgaocar strike force time and space.
Karim did induct some fresh legs in the second half, with Gilbert Oliviera and Anthony Barbosa coming in midway into the second session, but even they were not able to break the deadlock.
Salgaocar`s best chance came in the 74th minute when the irrepressible Ryuji, with a sudden burst of speed, entered the box and put Chidi in the clear. But the latter failed to reach for the ball with an open net.
Three minutes later, Chidi hit the upright after Gilbert had snaked in past a couple of defenders on the left.
In the day`s other match, the Prayag midfielders coordinated well between themselves, feeding the strikers on a regular basis.
The goal came after Kayne Vincent`s free-kick rebounded for an alert Josimar to slot the ball home.