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Essex Senior League: Imrul Gazi proud of Sporting Bengal United's effort against leaders Barking

PUBLISHED: 17:00 20 February 2017

A Sporting Bengal United player clears a Barking shot off the line during Saturday's match (pic: Terry Gilbert).

A Sporting Bengal United player clears a Barking shot off the line during Saturday's match (pic: Terry Gilbert).

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The Mile End Stadium outfit lost an eight-goal thriller 5-3 on Saturday, but gave title hopefuls a scare

Barking's Joe Pearman on the attack against Sporting Bengal (pic Terry Gilbert)Barking's Joe Pearman on the attack against Sporting Bengal (pic Terry Gilbert)

Sporting Bengal United manager Imrul Gazi praised the spirit of his players after pushing Essex Senior League leaders Barking all the way on Saturday at the Mile End Stadium.

The hosts lost a eight-goal thriller despite Codey Cameron, Steve Carvell and Oscar Mendes getting on the score sheet.

Barking proved to strong in the end and handed Bengal a second consecutive defeat having lost 3-2 to FC Romania on February 15.

“We played really well and there were so many positives to take from the game like last Wednesday,” said Gazi.

Sporting Bengal United players show their disappointment after Barking score their fourth of the match (pic: Terry Gilbert).Sporting Bengal United players show their disappointment after Barking score their fourth of the match (pic: Terry Gilbert).

“At 3-2 we had some brilliant chances. We had two one-on-ones and then a blatant penalty turned down.

“Unfortunately Barking went up the other end and got the fourth, but credit to the lads because they kept going and didn’t give up.”

Bengal had more support than usual on Saturday with several Clapton Ultras making the trip to Mile End and an attendance of 55.

With Tons second in the table, their fans were hoping to see Gazi’s inexperienced team take some points off Barking.

It wasn’t to be, however, and the Bengal boss was left to reflect on a similar story after a mixed start to 2017.

Gazi added: “Our defending at times was naïve, but we had a young side out and the average age was 21 or 22.

“Barking have been walking away with the league, but we had some of the Clapton Ultras supporting us on Saturday.

“They were cheering us on because they wanted us to do them a favour, so we had a crowd of around 50.

“I think a point would have been a fair result, but like most games of 2017, we didn’t take our chances.”

Bengal have managed to score five goals against Barking and FC Romania over the past week, but conceded eight times.

Gazi praised the quality of Blues attack after Saturday’s match and admitted he can see why they are top.

“Barking are a traditional non-league team and you know exactly what you are going to get with them,” he said.

“They are really organised, play it down the channels and they are a different type of side compared to FC Romania, but I can see why they are where they are.

“They have a brilliant strike force and the first goal they scored on Saturday was different class and something you don’t see at this level.”

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