A brace by striker Yusif Yakubu guided East Bengal to a convincing 2-0 victory over Vasco Sports Club Goa in their fourth round match of the ONGC I-League in Kolkata on Saturday.
After putting his side in the lead as early as in the sixth minute, Yakubu struck again at the fag end and was rightly adjudged man of the match.
With this victory, East Bengal, who lost twice and won once in their earlier round matches, have earned six points from four matches while Vasco remained at the same tally of one point after four outings.
Inspite of injury problems to a number of players, East Bengal put up a spirited performance and dominated the proceedings for most part of the match. They could have romped home with a bigger margin but for the chances their frontline missed.
Badly needing a win to remain in the fray, as their coach Stanly Rosario said before the tie, East Bengal went all out from the beginning and surged ahead in the sixth minute when Yakubu, collecting ball from medio Mehrajuddin, found the target with a nice shot.
Inspired with the early goal, East Bengal kept up the pressure and made repeated raids at the rival citadel but failed to increase the lead.
Vasco, who failed to impress and were mostly defensive, could found the target through their Uzbek striker Rabhson Deshabaev in the 66th minute which was, however, disallowed by the referee P K Bose from Madhya Pradesh for off side.
Towards the end, Vasco made some desperate moves all of which proved futile while East Bengal made sure of earning full points as Yakubu again made it home off medio Sanju Pradhan with a quick shot just before the start of injury time.