A last-minute goal from Mashari Al-Azmi helped Kazma Club of Kuwait beat 10-man East Bengal 2-1 in the concluding round of the group B league in the AFC Cup here at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday.
Ismail Sulaiman Al-Ajmi had put the visitor ahead early in the first half before East Bengal's Brazilian striker Edmilson Marques restored parity in the same session of play.
Needing a win for a berth in the pre-quarterfinals, Kazma began strongly and found the mark in the seventh minute when Ismail made the most of a confused East Bengal defence. With the host defenders reacting late, the Kazma striker got a free access into the box and slotted the ball home past a hapless East Bengal custodian Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.
After a feeble attempt from its young forward Seiminlen Doungel in the 13th minute, East Bengal kept up the pressure and found the equaliser soon. Edmilson found the net for East Bengal in the 19th minute after an initial attempt from Baljit Sahni rebounded off Kazma custodian Shebab Kankone. After this, East Bengal lost much of its new-found initiative as its defender Saikat Saha Roy was red-carded in the 35th minute, following his second booking. Down to 10 men East Bengal focused more on defending, in a bid to preserve the scoreline and pick up its first point of the tournament.
The host almost achieved it till the superb effort of Mashari, who collected a cross from Ismail and sent a searing shot past a diving Gurpreet to make it 2-1.
Kazma's last-minute goal ensured that East Bengal completed its worst international outing in the recent times, where the team finished its campaign losing all its six matches.
Kazma tallied 11 points from three wins, two draws and a loss.
The result: Kazma Club 2 (Ismail Sulaiman Al-Ajmi 7, Mashari Al-Azmi 90) bt East Bengal 1 (Edmilson Marques 19).
Mashari Al-Azmi slams a last-minute goal East Bengal finishes campaign without a win
Mashari Al-Azmi slams a last-minute goal
East Bengal finishes campaign without a win