The seventeenth Round of matches of the I-League 2010/11 were played from March 2 to 6 across India. While Salgaocar march on in their quest for a first title in 12 years, early pace setters East Bengal seem out of the race with another defeat.
Round 17 Match by Match Short Review
06-Mar-2011: East Bengal Club 1-2 (0-2) Mumbai FC (in Kolkata)
East Bengal Club suffered a 1-2 home defeat at the hands of Mumbai FC to weaken their position in the race of the I-League, some might even say this loss ended their chances to bring the title back to Kolkata. Mumbai FC took a 12th minute lead through Ezeh Nna Henry, whose brilliant out step long ranger went into the far corner of the net. The red-and-gold looked shocked and Ebi Theophilus Sukore made matters whose when he scored off a Henry pass in the 25th minute. The Kolkata side had more of the ball throughout, but they just didn't look threatening though they did score a consolation goal in the 92nd minute through substitute striker Biswarup Deb.
04-Mar-2011: Pune FC 2-1 (0-1) Air India (in Pune)
Pune FC needed a second half comeback to win 2-1 against Air India. The Airmen took a deserving first half lead through Okorogor Nnabuike Praise, but things changed after the break with PFC able to turn things around. First Brazilian Edmar Figueira equalised and then Japanese player of Indian origin Izumi Arata put them ahead with the result staying that way until the very end.
04-Mar-2011: Salgaocar SC 3-0 (0-0) HAL, Bangalore (in Goa)
Salgaocar continued their winning run with a 3-0 win against Bangalore's HAL at home in Goa. The job wasn't easy as they had to rely on three second half goals to keep the three points. The goals came from Yakubu Yusif, Gilbert Oliveira and Eneke Ikenwa.
02-Mar-2011: Indian Arrows 1-2 (0-1) Churchill Brothers SC (in Gurgaon)
The Indian Arrows suffered their first home defeat at the hands of former I-League champions Churchill Brothers SC in Gurgaon. The Goans won 2-1 with star striker Odafe Onyeka Okolie giving them an early 10th minute lead, while Kiwi substitute Kayne Vincent confirmed the win with an 88th minute strike. The Arrows were only able to reduce the deficit in the 90th minute through a lovely Jeje Lalpekhlua strike.
15-May-2011: JCT 2-2 (0-2) Chirag United SC (in Ludhiana)
JCT scored a vital comeback 2-2 draw against Chirag United SC at the floddlit Guru Nanak Stadium in Ludhiana. The point gained today takes JCT into 11th spot with 24 points from 24 matches out of the relegation zone, while Chirag United SC stay mid-table with 28 points from 24 matches.
The Kolkata side have only themselves to blame of not picking-up the three points. Their Brazilian striker Josimar da Silva Martins gave them a 2-0 half-time lead with goals in the 28th and 35th minute and it seemed the game was theirs, but JCT turned things around after the break. First Rahul Kumar reduced the deficit in the 53rd minute, then Gurtej Singh Jr. equalised in the 59th minute and it stayed two-all until the end.
05-Mar-2011: Mohun Bagan AC 2-1 (1-0) Viva Kerala (in Kolkata)
Mohun Bagan AC overcame a fighting Viva Kerala on a scorching afternoon at the Saltlake Stadium. The green-and-maroon took the lead in the 37th minute through a Subair Muritala Ali goal, which some thought could have been offside. Bagan had more of the chances also after the break, but especially Muritala was the culprit in missing chances. It needed the class of Brazilian Jose Ramirez Barreto, who came on as a substitute to win the game for his side. Viva Kerala could only reduce the deficit through a nice C.S. Sabeeth goal off Felix Chimaokwu.
05-Mar-2011: ONGC 0-1 (0-0) Dempo SC (in Kolhapur)
Dempo SC won 1-0 away to ONGC in Kolhapur to keep the pressure up on the I-League's top three, closing in on Salgaocar SC, Churchill Brothers SC and East Bengal Club. But it wasn't an easy game as the Goans had to wait until the 84th minute for Ranty Martins Soleye to score the winner.
Click here for the 4th I-League 2010/11 - League Table & Fixtures .