Bengaluru FC 2-1 FC Pune City
KICK-OFF: Nov. 30, 7.30PM (IST) (GMT +5.30), Sree Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru.
Channel; Streaming: Star Sports HD1, Star Sports 1, Star Sports 3; Hotstar, Jio TV.
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An unbeaten Bengaluru FC will look to extend their red-hot five-game winning streak when they take on FC Pune city at ‘The Fortress.’ In their last match against Delhi, the Blues looked disjointed and out of sorts with key players missing. It was only in the second half after the introduction of Erik Paartalu they played more cohesively and found a winner late in the second half in a game Delhi could’ve easily won.
For tonight’s game, they will welcome back Dimas Delgado who returns after a suspension and Erik Paartalu will be expected to start as well. They are still without their talisman Miku who is recovering from an ankle injury and will be out till January.
Goalscoring might get a tad difficult for Bengaluru FC tonight with Chencho Gyeltshen still finding his feet in the league and expected to start up front in place of Miku. However, they still have the league’s third highest scorer in Sunil Chhetri who can help them to a goal or two. Pune City have also shown a propensity to leak goals this season and that will work in Bengaluru’s favour.
Having won the reverse fixture earlier this season comprehensively, Bengaluru will be looking to pick off Pune City again.
Pune City have a mountain to climb if they are to get a point or three in today’s game. They fought valiantly and went down 0-2 in their previous encounter against Northeast United. They pressed high and didn’t concede a goal from open play in the game and that’s a good sign.
Pune City have conceded the most goals this season and Bengaluru the least. Approaching today’s game, they will have to be careful with the high press. Bengaluru’s front three have bags of pace and a single mistake will see them galloping towards goal.
With Diego Carlos out with a hamstring injury, Pune City will rely on the Brazilian Marcelinho and Ashique Kuruniyan to drive them forward. They will also hope the overall top scorer in the ISL, Iain Hume rediscovers his form before time runs out on Pune City’s campaign.
FULL-TIME: Bengaluru FC 2-1 FC Pune City
90’+5 – sub (Bengaluru FC: Kean Lewis [IN] Sunil Chhetri [OUT])
90’+3 – sub (Pune City: Jakob V. [IN] Marcelinho [OUT])
90’+3 – sub (Bengaluru: B. Haokip [IN] Udanta Singh [OUT])
88′ – GOAL! 2-1 (Rahul Bheke, Assist: H. Khabra, Bengaluru FC)
82′ – sub (Pune City: Shankar Sampingraj [IN] Marko Stankovic [OUT])
66′ – sub (Bengaluru: T. Haokip [IN] Chencho Gyeltshen [OUT])
34′ – sub (Pune City: Sahil Panwar [IN] Lalchhuanmawia [OUT])
15′ – GOAL! 1-1 (Rahul Bheke [own goal], Pune City)
11′ – GOAL! 1-0 (Udanta Singh, Assist: H. Khabra, Bengaluru FC)
The Bengaluru FC juggernaut rolls on unopposed as they picked up their sixth consecutive win over a feisty FC Pune City at “The Fortress.”
Udanta Singh put the Blues in the lead in the 11th minute. Coming in from the right flank he received a pass from Khabra and went past the Pune left-back Lalchhuanmawia who was defending deep inside the 18 yard box for some reason. Udanta sashayed past him and scored with a beautiful left-footed shot.
Pune City were fortuitous to equalize a few minutes later when Rahul Bheke intercepted a pass from the right flank by Marko Stankovic. Bheke slided in to prevent Robin Singh from getting to the ball, but ended up putting the ball into his own net.
What Rahul Bheke giveth Rahul Bheke taketh away! Bengaluru FC left it late to get the winner tonight as well. A Nishu Kumar pass found Harmanjhot Khabra who was just about able to keep the ball from going for a goal-kick with a volleyed pass back across the goal. The pass found its way to an unmarked Rahul Bheke who ghosted in and finished with a flourish.
- A quick look at the xG graph reveals the sheer dominance Bengaluru had on the night. Bengaluru had lots of possession and had as many as 30 attempts on goal.
- Harmonjot Khabra was a key player for them playing at right-back and is on top of the xA (Expected Assists) chart. He was a major factor in both the goals Bengaluru scored tonight.
- The Bhutanese forward Chencho Gyeltshen had a handful of great chances to score as seen with the high xG value assigned to him. The forward however lacked composure in front of goal and fluffed all his chances.
- Pune City defended well for the most part of the game only to lose out to a late goal. However, they did precious little going forward and only Marcelinho was anywhere close to the Bengaluru goal.
With the win, Bengaluru have extended their lead at the top of the table to five points and have a game in hand over the second-placed FC Goa. They will now travel to Guwahati on Dec. 5 to face off against Northeast United.