GOA: Ranti Martins scored five goals as Kingfisher East Bengal inflicted a humiliating 5-1 defeat over Dempo SC to move to fifth place in the 8th round of the Hero I-League, played at Nehru Stadium, here today.
East Bengal who led 2-1 at half time scored all the five goals through Hero of the Match Ranti Martins.
Dempo who fought back after conceding two early goals but fell apart through Ranti’s brilliant performance, pulled one back through Carlos Hernandez from a penalty in the 27th minute.
East Bengal started well and put early pressure on the home side and hardly the Dempo defence could settle down as the Red and Golds surged ahead in the first minute after they allowed left back Robert Lalthlanumna’s well directed cross to fall for Dudu Omagbemi.
Dudu controlled the ball and took a shot which keeper Laxmikant Kattimani did well to block but the ball went to Ranti Martins who slotted the ball from close.
Dempo defence looked vulnerable to aerial balls and once again succumbed when Robert Lalthlanumna who overlapped well on the left once again put the Dempo’s defense apart in the 12th minute when he centred the ball to Ranti Martins into the box. Rival defender Rowlison failed to intercept it and Ranti controlled the ball and after positioning himself beat the keeper to find the back of the net.
Unfazed by the early lapses from the home side’s defence, Eelco Schattorie’s men took things in their stride and slowly settled down and once they got their act together there was not looking back as they attacked the rival citadel with repeated forays.
Clifford Miranda forced keeper Abhijit Mondal to tip the ball over the bar from a flag kick midway in the first half. Dempo earned a penalty when Francis Fernandes was brought down inside the box by defender Deepak Mondal and the referee showed him a yellow card and awarded a penalty.
Carlos Hernandez’s kick from the spot found the net beating Abhijit Mondal to his left in the 27th minute.
Thereafter, Dempo kept on the pressure and had two clear chances to find the equaliser but first Lenny Rodrigues’ weak shot was saved by the diving Mondal and later Carlos Hernandez’s header went straight into the keeper’s hands.
Dempo continued to put the pressure in search of the equaliser until Ranti Martins scored his hat-trick in the 59th minute from a penalty after defender Rowilson Rodrigues brought down Dudu Omagbemi.
Five minutes latter, Ranti Martins scored his fourth goal after he was set up by Lalrindika Ralte to take the match away from Dempo for any comeback.
The Dempo defence again fell apart as Ranti Martins who picked the ball inside the box ran solo beating couple of defenders to slot the ball into the net to inflict more misery to the home team who lost their second successive match.
The win is a shot in the arm for coach Eelco Schattorie who got the first win in the Hero I-League after taking over the reign from Armando Colaco, as they now moved to fifth place with 12 points from 7 matches.
Hero of the Match: Ranti Martins (KEB).