Score : 2 - 2
Team: Anwar Ali, Sunil Chhetri, Odafa Okolie, Kingshuk Debnath, Manish Maithani, N. P. Pradeep, Rahim Nabi, Rakesh Masih, Snehashish Chakraborty, Shilton Paul, Surkumar Singh,
MB Goals: Manish Maithani ( 20 min ), Odafa Okolie ( 60 min ).
Opp Goals: Manandeep ( 21 min ), Manandeep ( 39 min ).
MB Cards : Anwar Ali ( 30 min ) .
Replacements: N. P. Pradeep ( out - 62 ), Ashim Biswas ( in - 62 ), Snehashish Chakraborty ( out - 75 ), Manish Bhargav ( in - 75 ),
Mariners looking for full points from away match25-Mar, 2012
Mariners today had their practice session in the Balewadi Complex ground in Pune, the venue where they will meet Air India tomorrow.
McDowell Mohun Bagan has so far bagged 37 points from 20 matches and are placed in the 2nd position, 9 points behind league leaders Dempo Sports Club, though the latter has played a match more.
When these two teams last played against each other, McDowell Mohun Bagan beat Air India 3-1 in Salt Lake Stadium with Odafa Okolie scoring a brace and Ashim Biswas netting the other goal.
Today's session started with half an hour of physical training and stretching exercise. This was followed by a brief team meeting and some practice on ball control. The players were divided into 2 teams and each team had to keep the ball under their control by passing it to each other, and the other team had to snatch the ball from the opponents control.
Then there was some situation practice, during which Bablu da became a bit upset and said, "Run boys run, why only Surkumar and Sunil is running?"
During the setpiece movement practice, when Rahim Nabi scored a brilliant goal after making a perfect spot jump, from Snehasish's corner, Subrata Bhattacharya and other players applauded Nabi's effort. Sunil Chhetri also scored a nice goal by header from one such corner.
When Nabi missed a sitter from Anwar's header, Bablu da questioned, "What is happening Nabi?"
Snehasish and Pradeep also took some free kick and Technical Director showed Snehasish in which area of opponent penalty box to direct his free kick. After few errors, when Snehasish's free kick found Rakesh who brilliantly headed the ball in, Subrata Bhattacharya congratulated both Snehasish and Rakesh Masih by saying, "Well done Rakesh, good free kick Snehasish."
Sunil Chhetri, N. P. Pradeep and Odafa Okolie took some direct free kicks from outside the box. Bablu da scolded Shilton for letting in an easy goal when he failed to stop Pradeep's shot.
Lastly, Odafa, Sunil, Pradeep, Anwar and Rakesh took some penalty kicks. Odafa did not miss a single spot kick. Sunil Chhetri, like Zidane did in World Cup final against Italy, took a shot by a delightful chip which went straight in with goalkeeper having moved to one side.
In tomorrow's match, Mariners will have to be careful as 5 players of the 18-member squad has 1 yellow card against their name like Rakesh Masih, N. P. Pradeep, Sangram Mukherjee, Subhashish Roy Chowdhury and Ashim Biswas.
After the practice session, Odafa Okolie said, "I don't play for personal record. Whether I become highest scorer or not does not matter, the main thing is that my team should win. We will try hard and play together as a team to beat Air India tomorrow. Definitely, still we have got good chance to lift the I league.
Rahim Nabi said, "To be in the title race, we will have to win all the matches from now on. We still have a fair chance of winning the title."
Coach Prasanta Banerjee looked a bit cautious when he said, "Tomorrow's match is extremely important because of the following reasons. Firstly, this is an away match and we are playing an I league match after a gap of around 1.5 months. Added to this, we will be playing tomorrow with only 1 foreigner. Right now, we have 6 matches left and we are seeing the tournament as a knockout one, because losing points in any match will push us further away from the title."
He also added, "Tomorrow we will have to get the goal as soon as possible, otherwise pressure will keep mounting on us in the 2nd half. We are right now thinking match by match."
Tomorrow's match will kickoff at 6:30 p.m.
Odafa Okolie is a Nigerian footballer who joined McDowell Mohun Bagan at...