HYDERABAD: Mohammedan Sporting Club, despite playing with 10-men, put on a valiant effort but end of the day it was not enough as Hyderbad FC Reserves walked out victorious 2-1 in their Hero 2nd Division League encounter on Wednesday at the GMC Balayogi Athletics Stadium in Gachibowli, Hyderabad.
After a scoreless first-half, substitute Abhishek Halder (50′) put Hyderbad ahead before Tirthankar Sarkar (71′) equalised for Mohammedan SC. Nonetheless, Kynsailang Khongsit (89′) late strike handed Hyderabad full three points.
Mohammedan SC looked sharp from the outset pressing high and controlling possession with their quick and accurate passing game inside Hyderabad’s half.
Vanlalbiaa Chhangte was particularly impressive both on the wing and inside the box as the Panthers have set up camp in front of their opponents’ goal reducing Hyderabad’s options to a few counter attacking attempts.
Albeit displaying plenty of technical ability with eye-catching combination plays the Mohammedan SC strikers were guilty of straying offside on several occasions.
Hyderbad looked to catch Mohammedan SC on the counter-attack, but poor finishing proved to be their downfall as they wasted a number of good opportunities to break the deadlock.
While Hyderabad laboured in search of their feet, Mohammedan SC established a comfortable rhythm whenever they found themselves in possession making it tough for their opponents to impose their game.
It was a positive and spirited performance of Mohammedan SC in the first-half, which fully deserved at least one goal. Half-time, however, arrived with the score remaining goalless.
Following a scoreless opening half which failed to produce a clear goal-scoring opportunity, the hosts showed far more urgency and took the lead in the 50th minute when Abhishek made a smart run in behind the Mohammedan SC back four to slot past a helpless Priyant Singh from close range.
While the goal buoyed Hyderabad to continue pushing high into the Mohammedan SC final third, the early wake-up knocked their opponents into action as Mohammedan SC restored the parity in the 71st minute when Tirthankar Sarkar curled a 25-yard free kick into the top corner of Vishal’s net.
The equalizer signalled a lift in intensity from the Black Panthers, who made several decent attacks with Chhangte, Chidi and Sanjib testing Vishal, however, things took a unexpected turn for the Black Panthers when Shafiul Rahman got a straight red in the 73rd minute after he fouled Jacob Vanlalhimpuia from behind.
Thereafter, Hyderabad used their numerical advantage to launch relentless attack and the number of shots they had increased however Priyant covered his area well to keep some stunning strikes at bay.
However despite his best efforts Priyant could not hold Hyderabad’s advances off forever as Khongsit head home from close range with only one minute on the clock.
To their credit Mohammedan SC fought till the end and hit the crossbar before forcing a last-ditch goal-line clearance in added time, but the hosts survived to grab 3 points to the delight of their coach.
Despite the loss the Black Panthers still leading the Group B log with 9 points from 4 matches and will travel to Chennai to face Chennaiyin FC Reserves next on March 2, 2020.