ARMY XI BAGGED a hard-fought victory against BNR in first first game in the Calcutta Football League (Premier Division A) this season. Held at Khardah, the match saw both teams play an attacking brand of football from the very first minute, with the Army offence being more effective initially. They even breached the net once but it was disallowed for offside.
The BNR defence played a physical game to counter the Army attack. They picked up a couple of early yellows too. But as the game progressed the fight became more even with BNR at one point dominating the midfield. But Army defended their territory efficiently, with BNR failing to score in spite of getting a number of corners and free kicks from decent positions. The only time they managed to send the ball in, it was from a clear offiside situation.
The deadlock broke when Lalwamaya of Army shot right past the BNR keeper. The one goal lead was enough and the Army defence remained resolute till the end to ensure full points from their first game. BNR, however, have started the season on the wrong foot, with both their matches till now resulting in defeat.
In another match played simultaneously at Gayeshpur, Aryan Club and Southern Samity ended things in a 0-0 stalemate. Both the teams were playing their second match in the CFL, and while Aryan had won their first match, Southern Samity had managed to earn a draw. This result allows both teams to remain unbeaten, while sending Aryan Club to the top of the table with 4 points from 2 matches.
The weekend will see the big guns come out as East Bengal, Mohun Bagan and Mohammedan Sporting all play their first CFL matches. With TV broadcasts kicking in and the familiar legions of fans all ready to take over the stadiums once again, the CFL will finally take on the higher tempo that it is expected to carry throughout the month-long intense tournament.