AIFF Media Team
TRAU FC 2 (Kishan Singh 34’, Douglas Veloso 52’)
Churchill Brothers 0

KOLKATA: TRAU FC emerged with their first win of the Hero I-League 2021/22 season by overcoming Churchill Brothers 2-0 here at the Naihati Stadium today. One goal either side of half time from Kishan Singh and Douglas Veloso Santana set TRAU FC on their way to a relatively comfortable victory against their Goan opponents.

TRAU FC entered the contest visibly eager to force the issue in search of their first three points of the season, taking control of proceedings within the first ten minutes. They had their first big opening in the 9th minute when TRAU’s mercurial Brazilian Fernandinho set off on a trademark run, eventually coming on to his favoured left foot and taking a shot on goal. His far post bound effort was saved by Churchill Brothers goalkeeper Debnath Mondal, but only parried out to TRAU skipper Krishnananda Singh, who should have done better with his effort, but scuffed his shot.

Churchill Brothers’ first glimpse at goal came in the 12th minute, but it was only a half chance for their Nigerian front man Kenneth Ngwoke, whose header was blocked on its way to goal.

Churchill Brothers seemed to be living dangerously in the first half as their upbeat opponents continued to knock on the door throughout the contest. TRAU FC’s labour in search of a goal finally yielded results in the 34th minute after a fantastic team move.

After cutting the ball back in from the half space on the left, Kishan Singh arrived into the box with much aplomb as he slotted a left footed finish into the back of the net. Kishan’s finish took a healthy deflection on the way, but the stroke of luck was well deserved for The Red Pythons, who were comfortably the better side throughout the first half.

All of TRAU FC’s hard work up to this point was nearly undone moments later, however, when Komran Tursunov’s thunderbolt from over 25 yards almost pulled Churchill Brothers back into the contest. Tursunov’s long range effort was duly matched by Amrit Gope, whose acrobatic save capped off a spell of wonderful play all around.

The second half continued to be played in the same manner as the first, with Churchill Brothers keeping more ball possession, but the bulk of incisive attacking play coming from the team from Manipur.

TRAU FC extended their lead in the 52nd minute through Douglas Veloso, who got on the end of a cross from the right flank that was deflected on its way to the Brazilian striker’s head. There was an element of luck once again, but nothing can be taken away from Veloso, who saw off the attention of two Churchill Brothers defenders inside the box to head home the move and give Churchill Brothers an uphill battle for the remainder of the match.

Churchill Brothers huffed and puffed in search of a way back into the game, but resolute defending on the part of TRAU FC ensured that their clean sheet remained intact. With this win, TRAU FC climb out of the bottom three in the league table, joining Rajasthan United FC on four points.

Churchill Brothers, meanwhile, have their task cut out for them in order to get their season back on track and find the form that led them to finish as runners-up in the Hero I-League last season.