Match Report: East Bengal 2-1 Bengaluru FC

Sunday, 22 January 2017|Sunil A. Markal
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Old boy Robin Singh came back to haunt his old club as his side defeated Bengaluru FC 2-1 in the 5th Round of the 2016/17 I-League at the Barasat Stadium in Kolkata, on Sunday…

As predicted, both sides made one change each, with Thongkosiem Haokip and Nishu Kumar making ways for Ildar Amirov and Sena Ralte for the home and away side respectively.

The first half started with both sides resorting to safety approaches. The away side, though, had more time on the ball, but without many opportunities. East Bengal old boy Harmajot Khabra’s dangerous cross around the 16th minute was the first opportunity of the game, but was seen off by Gurwinder Singh. The Blues, after some settling down with neat interchange of passes, finally broke the deadlock on the 23rd minute. Right-back Rahul Bheke was caught napping as Eugeneson Lyngdoh found himself all alone on the left hand side of the box. The former Shillong captain effortlessly crossed it to an unmarked CK Vineeth in the box who slotted with his left foot easily. The away side, having done nothing to deserve a goal, came back into the game just five minutes later. Didika Ralte took a short corner passing it to Wedson Anselme, who returned it to the captain. The 24-year-old then crossed into the box for an easy Ivan Bukenya tap-in.

As expected, it was a high temper game, as two sides got into scuffles after Sunil Chhetri and Mehtab Hossain exchanged flares, for which both were cautioned.

It was a different story in the second half, though. After a sluggish ten minutes after the restart, it was end-to-end stuff as both sides tried to grab the lead. The home side hit the Blues defence time and again with their pace, but Willis Plaza was guilty of missing glaring opportunities. Bengaluru were bailed out by their custodian Amrinder Singh on multiple occasions, denying Plaza and Robin Singh. The latter got the better of the Blues number 1 15 minutes from time, but the post denied the striker his goal against his former club. He soon made amends, though, as he came back to haunt his old club. John Johnso’s poor back header fell into the path of the 26-year-old, who put a composed finish past Amrinder to give his side all three points.

Roca tried to grab the equalizer by throwing all his firepower, but the brilliant Ivan Bukenya in East Bengal’s defence made sure there were no more casualties. The scoreline could have been bigger in the favor of the home side had it not been for the wastefulness of Trinidadian Willis Plaza.

Man of the Match: Ivan Bukenya.

FeverPitch’s Match of the Match: Ivan Bukenya.

Photo Credit : I-League Media