Mumbai faced Central Bank of India (CBI) in the opening round of the 110th Nadkarni Cup at RCF Sports Club in Chembur. Mumbai won in comfortable fashion with a 2-0 win with Umesh and Sohail getting their names on the scoresheet.
Gaurav Kadam, Mumbai FC Media (SportzDose)
Mumbai, the defending champions of the Nadkarni Cup organized by the MDFA, began their title defense with a win over CBI in a commanding display at the RCF Sports Club Ground in Chembur.
Mumbai coach Arshad Hussain employed a 4-3-3 lineup with Vinil Poojary leading the attack. He had Sudhakar and Sohail in support at the front. Skipper Noel Dias marshaled the midfield with Patrick and Kashif alongside him. The defense was helmed by Martin and Umesh with Joel Dias and Chinmay at the wingback positions.
The game began with both teams looking to get going in the match. Attacks were pouring in from both ends as the game was free flowing. CBI had the first close chance when a cross from the right was headed in but Mumbai custodian Ubair Ali was up to the task. Mumbai avoided another scare when a shot from a CBI attacker was cleared off the line heroically by Joel.
Mumbai slowly took control of the game and were moving the ball around well in the midfield. Lot of the attacking happened along the wings with Sohail and Sudhakar utilizing their pace to the full extent. Mumbai made their first change just minutes before half time when Kashif gave way for Faiz Noorani. Mumbai’s persistence was rewarded when they took the lead from a corner put in by Patrick. Umesh rose the highest and headed it in past the CBI to give Mumbai the lead. The first half came to an end with Mumbai leading 1-0.
The second half began pretty much on a similar note as Mumbai had the control from the get go. Keeper Ubair was again called into action when a CBI attacker moved in from the right and took a fierce shot that was thwarted away. Mumbai managed to double their lead when Sohail scored from a free kick taken by Patrick. The keeper saved the initial shot but the fumbled rebound was latched onto by Sohail who headed into an empty net.
The second change made by Mumbai saw Aditya Dalvi come in for Sudhakar. Dalvi almost made an immediate impact when he shot from the left but his shot was brushed away by the CBI keeper. CBI attack was almost non-existent at this point owing to Mumbai’s strong pressing and solid defense.
Dalvi had a chance to get his name on the scoresheet when he was put through by a delightful through ball from Patrick but his shot hit the post. The final change was made when Sohail and Deepak swapped places. This was the last action of the game as the ref blew the whistle as Mumbai emerged 2-0 winners.
Mumbai move on to the next round and will face the winner of Mumbai Customs and Central Railway on 15th January.
Mumbai 2 (Umesh, Sohail) CBI 0