East Bengal FC head coach Carles Cuadrat was delighted for the three points as his side secured a hard-fought win against Chennaiyin FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Monday.

East Bengal FC experienced a tale of two halves against Chennaiyin FC. In the opening half, the hosts struggled to capitalise on the limited opportunities and faced significant pressure from the opposing team. However, a strategic move unfolded in the second half as they introduced PV Vishnu, Mandar Rao Dessai, and Aleksandar Pantic through substitutions. This change sparked a turnaround for the team, seizing control of the game.

The breakthrough came when Nandhakumar Sekar scored, breaking the deadlock and giving East Bengal FC the lead. Despite continued efforts from Chennaiyin FC to create scoring opportunities, their failure to convert allowed East Bengal FC to clinch their first victory against the Marina Machans in the ISL.

Looking back at the game, Cuadrat was proud of the way his side fought back in the second half and secured the three points.  

“We played a very bad first half, but we played well in the second half. We were superior in the second half. In the first half, I think that Chennaiyin FC deserved to be in front and score. But we made substitutions (in the second half). It’s our job to try to make things work. I think we can be satisfied with our performance in the second half and the final result (three points), that is the important thing,” he stated in the post-match press conference. 

Sekar played a pivotal role in East Bengal FC's recent victory by scoring the sole goal of the game, marking his fifth goal of the season. Impressively, this extended his goal-scoring streak to two consecutive games. Securing his place as the team's second-highest goal scorer this season, he closely follows Cleiton Silva.

Having joined East Bengal FC in the summer, Sekar has made a substantial impact, boasting a tally of five goals and three assists. Notably, he shares the honour of the most goal contributions for the club in the current campaign with Silva.

Cuadrat was delighted with Sekar’s progress so far and revealed how important he remains for their attack.

“He has to be consistent with his performances and he’s getting there. He’s getting the numbers. If he’s the leader among the Indian players in (our) attack, it means a lot. It means that he’s doing the right things,” the Spaniard said.