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Chidi shines in Mohun Bagan's historic triumph

October 25, 2009 21:17 IST

Nigerian Edeh Chidi scored four goals as Mohun Bagan defeated arch-rivals East Bengal 5-3 in a round four I-League match in Kolkata.

Chidi completely stole the show as he scored in the 17th, 33rd, 46th and 66th minutes respectively. Newcomer Manish Mathani was the other scorer for the green-and-maroon squad.  

The high voltage match saw as many as six goals in the first half, as the pendulum of the match swung in favour of both the teams. With four goals to his credit, Chidi was adjudged the man of the match.

For East Bengal, Yusif Yakubu scored a brace (35th and 44th) while Nirmal Chhetri scored in the eighth minute. East Bengal sorely missed the services of Bhaichung Bhutia, who missed out of the clash due to an injury.

East Bengal had the better start to the match, as Bagan's defence struggled against the pace of the East Bengal's strikers. East Bengal drew the first blood, when Bagan's defence was found wanting, when they failed to block the a kick from Rennedy Singh that went straight to an unmarked Nirmal.

With no one to block him, Nirmal scored a free header right in front of the goal as East Bengal took the lead in the eighth minute.

However in the 17th minute, a surging Chidi scored his first, which was set up by Surkumar Singh from the right. The Indian medio tackled N Govin Singh and Mehrajuddin Wadoo before crossing it to Chidi who was bang on target.

The 1-1 equaliser livened up the already electrifying atmosphere with Mohun Bagan supporters going berserk bursting fire-crackers.

Mohun Bagan surged ahead five minutes later, with a goal by Manish Mathani in what appeared to be a goalkeeping lapse by East Bengal's Abhra.

From the left, Jose Ramirez Barreto passed it to Snehashish who gave a centre that was deflected by Abhra. The deflection went to Chidi who passed it to Mathani and he made no mistake in giving his side 2-1 lead.

Chidi made it 3-1 as he capitalised from a Barreto cross from the right.

East Bengal, however came to fore to reduce the margin, cashing in on the Bagan's weak defence a minute later.

With no Bagan defenders in sight, Yakubu scored an easy goal utilising a Hammond pass as the match yielded five goals inside the 35th minute.

Just before the break, East Bengal equalised as the script again turned in their favour. The red-and-gold brigade made it 3-3 from a Rennedy Singh freekick from 18 yards.

After the break, Bagan snatched the lead right after the change over with Chidi carving a hat-trick. Snehashish set it up from the left of the box as James Singh capitalised on the shot to head the ball to Chidi.

Continuing his glorious run, the Nigerian slotted it home with Bagan taking a 4-3 lead.

The Chidi juggernaut did not stop there as Bagan scored their record fifth through the Nigerian import in the 66th minute.

With the win, Mohun Bagan avenged their 0-5 loss to East Bengal in the historic 1975 IFA Shield final.

At that time, national goalkeeper Bhaskar Ganguly had conceded four goals. But 34 years later, East Bengal custodian Abhra Mondal conceded a record five goals.

Mohun Bagan now have six points, while East Bengal have two points after four matches.

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