Imphal: Singam Subash Singh’s double strike ensured debutants Neroca FC extend their unbeaten run to six matches with another 2-1 win over the gritty Indian Arrows at the Khuman Lampak Main Stadium here on Friday.
For a match tipped to be a battle between debutants, Neroca completely dominated the proceedings one that made the ‘newcomers’ tag look ludicrous in-front of their impeccable performance.
Prabhsukhan Singh Gill on the goal for Arrows however disappointed for the second consecutive time conceding three in the opening-half itself, one of which was cancelled for offiside.
The home side dictated the contest right from the go, eventually breaking the deadlock as early as the 13th minute when Haitian midfielder Fabien Vorbe headed in a Glen Aryn Williams free-kick, but from an offside position. While they scored another from a penalty but was asked to retake as Jean Fabien Vorbe rattled the bar in his second attempt.
The same however could not save Arrows later as striker Subhash Singh, deployed in the right wing broke loose in the 39th minute to open Neroca’s account. It was after Akhlidin Israilov released a well-directed through-ball in his path which the former Bagan player chipped over a hapless Prabhsukhan to send the 10000 odd crowd into jeers.
Returning to the squad after his suspension, captain Amarjit tried one with an ambitious long shot that had the opposition goalie Lalit Thapa dive to parry it away. But Neroca scored once again six minutes later.
A goal-kick from Thapa reached Felix Chidi whose defense splitting ball for Subhash saw the latter beat Anwar Ali with pace before sending Gill the wrong way to slot the ball into an open net. The 27 year-old could have had his hat-trick as play resumed but hit the crossbar.
While chances went bagging for the home side they scored from a penalty in the 82nd minute, that had come after Boris Singh had lunged into substitute Nedo Turkovic. But while Jean found the net from his first shot the retake meant he had to take again eventually hitting the upright.
Another substitue Abhijit Sarkar of Arrows however scored his maiden league goal tapping-in a Rahul Parveen cross past Lalit Thapa but was just not enough for a magical comeback as the home side bagged all three points, their fourth win this season.
The victory meant Neroca move up to second position with 14 points from seven outings while Arrows dropped to eight. The young colts next face another Shillong Lajong, while Neroca counter Chennai City away from home.