Mumbai FC defended well to hold East Bengal to a goalless draw in a Group A league match of the 36th Federation Cup football tournament here on Friday.
With the draw, both the teams are on four points from three matches. Dempo are at the top with six points from two matches.
Royal Wahingdoh, who have three points from two matches, play their next match against Sporting Clube de Goa on January 4. A win will give them the edge over East Bengal and Mumbai FC to qualify for the semi-finals.
East Bengal keeper Subhasish Roy Chowdhury, who brought off a couple of good saves, was declared man of the match.
With Dempo sitting pretty at the top of the table with two wins, Thursday's match has been crucial for both the teams as they have three points each from two matches.
East Bengal played with more confidence with quick short passes. They had an early chance to forge ahead but Dudu Omagbemi's effort was blocked by rival defender Justin Stephen after he was put through by Cavin Lobo.
Mumbai FC, who relied more on the long balls, tried to catch their rivals on the counter and a created couple of clear chances but failed to score. First, Mohammed Rafi shot the ball wide off the target from a Climax Lawerence assist.
East Bengal keeper Subhasish Roy Chowdhury made a close save when he blocked a powerful drive from Josimar Da Silva to deny Mumbai FC the lead at half time as both the teams failed to break the deadlock at the break.
East Bengal continued to have more ball possession but could not translate their superiority in terms of goals as rival keeper Kunal Sawant denied Mehtab Hussain from scoring. Later substitute S Malsawmtulunga's headerd went out.