A 10-man Mohun Bagan Super Giant defeated Emami East Bengal by 1-0 in the second Kolkata derby of the season to win the Durand Cup 2023 for a record 17th time. A lone goal from Dimitri Petratos was enough for the Green and Maroon team to win the Durand Cup 2023 final. With this win, Mohun Bagan became the most successful team in Durand Cup history,
East Bengal vs. Mohun Bagan, Durand Cup 2023 final | First Half
Both teams started the first with great positivity and hunger for a goal. Mohun Bagan Super Giant tried to attack with Dimitri Petratos on the right and Ashique Kuruniyan on the left. Within the first few minutes of the game, Dimitri had created a few changes but Harmanjot Khabra and Jordan Elsey helped East Bengal deal with that challenging period. East Bengal looked confident on the counterattack with Mandar Rao Desai and Naorem Mahesh on the left and Nadha Kumar on the right. Saul Crespo tried to be the link between them.
East Bengal survived some early nervous time
In the 14th minute, Asish Rai provided a ball along the ground to Hugo Boumous in the middle whose pass found Sahal Abdul Samad on the left. Sahal made a good run with the ball to enter the box but Harmanjot Khabra’s interception blocked the cross for East Bengal. Again in the 18th minute, Armando Sadiku ran away with the ball from Saul Crespo and then found Hugo Boumous in the middle. Hugo then found Shahal on the left but this time it was Mohammad Rakip who blocked the cross from the left.
East Bengal somehow broke through that period and tried a counterattack in the 24th minute with Mohammed Rakip receiving a through ball from Harmanjot Khabra but his cross from the right was blocked by Shahal Abdul Samad to remove the danger. In the 28th minute again, on the counterattack, Borja Hererra gave a delicious pass along the ground to Siverio whose pass to Nandha Kumar in the middle provided East Bengal with their best chance. But, Anwar covered that well to give Vishal Kaith the opportunity to come ahead and grab the ball.
Jordan Elsey was forced to be substituted
In the 34th minute, Jordan Elsey had to leave the field with an ankle injury as Jose Pardo replaced him at the heart of East Bengal’s defence. In the 36th minute, Mohun Bagan had their best chance with Anirudh Thapa providing a ball with Ashquie Kuruniyan on the left. But, his cross was not perfect enough to find any of Dimitri or Sadiku in the box.
Before the first half, East Bengal got a golden opportunity with first Siverio missing a header and then Nandha Lumar missing the volley from the rebound ball. East Bengal seemed to have found the mojo with Mahesh doing their magic inside the box minutes later butt without any later. Minutes later, tension rose in the field as Saul Crespo and Hugo Boumous received yellow cards for a tussle. In the added minutes, Dimitri Petratos nearly scored just before the first-half whistle from the right of the box. He received a beautiful pass from Sahal Abdul Samad on the left of the box but could not keep the ball on target as the first half ended goalless.
East Bengal vs. Mohun Bagan, Durand Cup 2023 final | Second Half
The second half started with a chance to East Bengal. Javier Siverio nearly reached the backpass from Anwar Ali. Vishal Kaith had to intervene to kick the ball away. Both teams tried to build their game from the flanks but lacked quality finishing in the box. For that, East Bengal and Mohun Bagan coaches had to bring some fresh legs on the field. In the 57th minute, Cleiton Silva replaced Borja Herrera whole two minutes later, Manvir Singh replaced Asish Rai. Soon after coming Manvir Singh made his mark with a great cross for Hugo Boumous. But, Hugo could not be on target from the left of the box.
Anirudh Thapa received a red to leave the Mariners with 10 men
In the 61st minute, Anirudh Thapa was booked for the second time as he raised his leg to tackle Javier Siverio in the middle of the box. Thapa’s red card cracked open a huge chance for East Bengal as Mohu Bagan were left with 10 men on the field. Soon after that, Naorem Mahesh was on target but Vishal Kaith grabbed it easily. Mohun Bagan had to make a triple change to stay in the game. Ahsquie, Sadiku and Hugo were replaced by Glan Martins, Liston Colaco and Jason Cummings.
Dimitri Petratos gave Mohun Bagan the lead
In the 71st minute, against the run of play, Dimitri Petratos scored a stunning goal to put Mohun Bagan ahead. The goal meant so much for the team as he went straight to the fans after scoring the goal. Dimitri kept running with the ball from the left as East Bengal defenders kept on waiting in the box. Dimitri’s shot from the left of the box went straight to the right low corner of the goal to give 10 men Mohun Bagan the lead.
Post the goal, East Bengal tried their best to press more and find the goal. But, Anwar Ali, Subhasish Bose and others were ready to block each ball out. Then, East Bengal made a triple change to spice things up. Nishu Kumar, Vanspual and Suhair replaced Rakip, Nunga and Siverio in the 78th minute.
In the last ten minutes, East Bengal looked desperate but without any results to show for them. Nadha, Mahesh lacked the finish Carles Cuadrat was looking for while Mohun Bagan’s defence stayed as a unit to keep the lead intact. Silva tried a shot from the edge of the box in the 86th minute for the last try of the game before Mohun Bagan were crowned the Durand Cup champions for a record 17th time.