Churchill Brothers' paid dearly for leaving yawning gaps in their defence and were beaten by Tollygunge Agragami 2-1 in a National Football League match in Margao, Goa, on Tuesday.
The Kolkata side scored once in each half through Surjit Bose (second minute) and Dinesh Swar (47th) to register their first victory in the league.
Churchill, who had the match under their control for a major part, played with ten men for the last 20 minutes as defender Venancio Gonsalves had to leave the field on account of an injury after they had used up their quota of three substitutions.
The victory took Tollygunge's tally to four points from two matches while Churchill have one point from as many matches.
Even before the Churchill defence could settle down, Tollygunge took an early lead when Surjit Bose scored in the second minute from a goalmouth melee after Akeem Abolanle's shot was blocked by a rival defender.
Tollygunge relied on long passes to breach the rival defence and came close twice to increase the lead but first Akeem's shot missed the goal narrowly and later a Musah header hit the bar.
But Dinesh Swar scored in the 47th minute.
Churchill were more organised in their attack and had plenty of chances to score but inept finishing by their frontliners let them down.
The chief offender was Mohammed Najeeb, who missed four clear chances from inside the box.
Yusif Yakubu, who was well marked by defender Suley Musah, also had his share of scoring chances but he too failed to beat keeper Sudip Sarka, who twice effected a fine saves.
Churchill kept the rivals under pressure for the entire second half but were frustrated by the rival defence which stood firm till coach Shabbir Ali called upon his key player I M Vijayan, who scored a gem of a goal with a sizzling backvolley to reduce the margin.
Referee Shaji Kurian of Kerala showed yellow cards to Churchill's Harinder Singh and Awoyemi Isiaka of Tollygunge.
"It was a good victory and I am happy that our boys have played well in defence to defend the 2-0 lead. To collect four points from two away matches is a good result and hope our boys continue the good work performed so far," Tollygugne coach Biswajit Das said.
Expressing his disappointment at losing the match, Churchill Brothers' coach Shabir Ali said, "It's the strikers that have let us down and hope they rectify their mistakes and do not repeat them."