Ellan Vannin continued their winning start to this year’s World Football Cup with a hard-earned 2-0 victory against Tamil Eelam in the second of the day’s double-header at the War Memorial Sports Ground in Carshalton.
The Manxmen suffered a blow after just 18 seconds when Darren Cain suffered a head injury in a collision with an opponent, and had to be substituted. Daniel Simpson had the game’s first real chance after 5 minutes, but his shot sailed over the bar. An incredible double save by Tamil Eelam goalkeeper Robert Osman was the highlight of the first half; having dived to his right to save the first goalbound shot, the ball came out to Ciarán McNulty, whose shot was fisted over the bar by Osman, who was already diving the wrong way.
Osman had an inspired first half against a dominant Ellan Vannin side, and he and his side held firm until the break. Around a minute into the second half, all of their good work came to naught when Ellen Vannin took the lead through Frank Jones, whose calm shot from the right-hand side of the box just evaded Osman and nestled in the bottom left-hand corner.
Quinthan Navaneethakrishan almost equalised with a delectable lob over the onrushing Dean Kearn, but his shot hit the base of the post and rolled away to safety.
Ellan Vannin moved further in front in the 55th minute, when a precise Joe Quayle pass found Darren Cain on almost exactly the same spot Jones scored from a few minutes earlier; like Jones, Cain made no mistake with a drive into the bottom left-hand corner. Sub Furo Davies was one of a number of Ellan Vannin players who missed chances in the second half.
Tamil Eelam made a raft of substitutions to try and force a change in proceedings as the game entered its later stages, but despite a fine shot from Chelliah after a cross from Caliston Calistus and another chance late on, they were unable to penetrate the Ellan Vannin defence. A good three points for the team from the Isle of Man, although Tamil Eelam will be heartened by a stubborn display against one of the tournament favourites.