Mohammedan Sporting, Kolkata, got what they wanted to ensure their promotion to the I-League first division - a draw against citymates Bhawanipore FC at the Bangalore Football Stadium on Thursday.
The age-old Kolkata club, the first Indian club to win the World’s second oldest football tournament the Durand Cup in Delhi, way back in 1940, last figured in the I-League during the 2008-09 season.
Md Sporting tallied 18 points from nine games and ensured their entry into the top tier with a game in hand. Rangdajied FC, Shillong, who have 16 are second and Bhawanipore third with 14 points are the two teams vying for the second slot.
The famed black and white combination never really pressed the pedal and were content to keep their score sheet clean even their opponents worked up a sweat to get a goal. As such, there wasn’t much of goalmouth action all through.
Bhawanipore’s Brazilian medios veteran Jose Baretto and Hudson Lima Silva posed some threat but Sporting staved them off with their crowding out tactics.
At the other end, their custodian Debjit Mazumdar was called upon to make a couple of saves to deny Sporting striker Jerry Zirsingha and Younes Baltham. The tournament concludes on April 28.
Air India and Sikkim United are at the bottom of the I-League first division table at the moment. Unless the AIFF, in its wisdom, decides that there will be no relegation, these two teams might well figure in the 2nd division next season.