That was a truly historic victory! An Indian club enters the AFC CUP FINAL for the FIRST TIME EVER!How fitting that it was Sunil Chettri's majesty that got them there! Vineeth, Lyngdoh, Rubio, Anto - everyone did their bit for Bengaluru Football Club. Johor meanwhile were under-par and will be disappointed with how sloppy they were!This has been A FANTASTIC NIGHT for Indian Football, and it's been my absolute pleasure to bring this to you.Thank you for reading, JAI HINDOn behalf of an ecstatic Sportskeeda football team, Anirudh Menon signing out, Toodle-ooo
92' Vineeth tries to break, but he is foiled by Adil
91' Antonio smashes into Amrinder. The wily keeper wastes half a minute as he recovers from that
90' SUBSTITUTION - Nishu Kumar OFF, Salam ON
90' CK Vineet NEVER GIVES UP DOES HE! Almost creates something out of nothing by chasing a lost cause and spreading panic in the JDT ranks - as he has done all night long!
88' JDT are finally going route 1 - but BFC are holding strong - Amrinder collects and pumps it forward
87' SUBSTITUTION for Bengaluru - Lyngdoh OFF, Len Doungel ON
86' As if wounded by my commentary, Kunanlan puts the ball in. Keegan Perreira clears it with ease
85' WHY ARE JDT NOT SWINGING IT IN? They have the big men forward, but are not doing anything with it
84' Anto swings it in deep, but Lyngdoh can only head it wide from two yards!!!!
83' Eugenson has been imperious today, and he toys and torments Kunanlan but JDT clear
82' Safee has a snapshot that is on target, but it is well saved by Amrinder!
81' SUBSTITUTION for Johor - Eldstal ON, Akil OFF. Marcos Antonio too has moved forward, and now with Eldstal on they have three BIG men in defence. Juanan and Johnson are no dwarves themselves
80' SUBSTITUTION - Chettri limps OFF, Keegan Perreira ON. Hopefully, that is not too serious for the BFC Captain. Roca has sensibly decided that defensive is the way to go
79' Johor win a corner, and Safiq stands over it - the corner is rubbish
78' OH CHETTRI! The captain has a whack from distance and it flies just high
77' FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!! Robbat puts in a horrible challenge on Rubio. Juanan and Johnson take exception to that! There is much pushing and shoving, but it's calmed down well by the ref! YELLOW for the Johor man
Lyngdoh swings in a superb ball that just requires a glance. A glance is exactly what Juanan provides! SUPERB HEADER!
74' CK Vineeth gets booked after getting involved in a fracas that started with Lyngdoh and Kunanlan taking exception to each other
73' CHANCE FOR CHETTRIIII!!! Lyngdoh skins Kunanlan with contemptuous ease. He smacks it at Izham, who can only parry it into the box. Chettri arrives on the spot, but his shot is well blocked by Antonio
71' JDT have been decent in the second half, but they haven't tested Amrinder yet. There is going to be no extra time now, and Johor HAVE to go all in if they are to get a chance to defend their crown
70' BFC are right back in Johor's grill. George wins a succession of throws deep in JDT territory
Izham should have done better than in the Johor goal. But take nothing away from Chettri! That was right out of the top drawer from a man who ALWAYS steps up for the big occasion
Holy Mother of ....!! WHAT. A. GOAL. Chettri receives the ball at the edge of the box and works an inch of space for himself before unleashing an absolute belter that rifles into the net.Christ, I love that man. By the sound of it, so does the Kanteerava
65' CHANCE FOR LYNGDOH!!! CHETTRI PUTS HIM ONE ON ONE WITH THE KEEPER WITH AN ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS BALL THROUGH! But Eugenson is on his heels a bit there and cannot reach the ball ahead of Izham. The resultant corner is wasted
64' Juanan finds George on the right with an absolute peach of a ball. He in turns lays it off to the overlapping Rino Anto, but the Malayalee fullback's cross is too deep
63' Johor are knocking at the door here - Juanan steps to clear a dangerous looking Kunanlan cross!
62' SUBSTITUTION for Johor - Amirul OFF, Gary Steven Robbat ON. Mr. Robbat has a beard that would make Joe Ledley go green with envy. It is majestic!
60' Sunil Chettri tries to find an unmarked Vineeth at the far post, but he doesn't get it past the massive noggin' of Marcos Antonio
58' Safiq sends the ball to Majestic bus stand after he bought himself some space with an exquisite touch. If only the finish matched the build-up. Johor are playing much, much better here - and are pegging Bengaluru back
57' Safee has the chance to prompt a break, but his ball to Safiq Rahim is poor! Johor are a constant danger when the counter though - they move forward in unrelenting waves of red
56' Amrinder PAAAJI!!!!! He comes racing out of his penalty area to clear a JDT long ball. Ali clatters into Lyngdoh as the BFC tries to chest down his goalie's clearance.
54' Lyngdoh's corner is not upto his usual standards, but Johor are panicking everytime the ball comes into the box. It falls to Anto outside the box, but his cross in is far too deep
53' OH LYNGDOH!!! Eugenson is found by a superb reverse ball from Chettri and he runs at a backtracking Marcos Antonio. The Big Brazilian does well though to keep the rampaging BFC man at bay and concede a corner
52' John Johnson smacks it out of the ground, as he unceremoniously clears an Amirul ball
51' Johor must have gotten an earful from Mario Gomez in the break. They are playing much better here, and are stringing passes together with far greater purpose. Fazly breaks down the left, and sends an inviting cross in, but it's well cleared by Juanan. Fazly then commits a silly foul on Anto and hands back the initiative to BFC
49' Chettri finds some space on the left once again, but as he cuts back in - he's crowded out
47' OH CHETTRIIIIIII!!! The captain is well found by Vineeth after some strong hold up play and Chettri shapes to curl it into the far corner. 9 times out of 10, that was going in. Unfortunately for BFC, this was the exception. Has to go down as a wasted chance!
46' OOO! CHANCE FOR JDT as Amirul runs into the box, but Amrinder is ought to collect
45' Cameron attempts to find Chettri on the left right from kickoff - it's not a great pass. The Stadium is ringing with chants of "BFC! BFC! BFC!". Can the home team pick it up from where they left it?
Safiq gave the Malaysian champions, and defending AFC CUP champions the lead with a counter attack (and with the help of some shockingly poor keeping from Amrinder). Bengaluru's Captain Marvel brought them right back in, though, with a superb header from a brilliant Lyngdoh cross.The way both these teams are defending, there are MORE GOALS in this game, for sure!
46' The freekick is rubbish. But Nishu Kumar retrieves and just as he was about to cross it back in, the ref blows the whistle for halftime! BFC are not happy!! SCENES!!
45' THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN AN ADVANTAGE!!! COME ON REF!! Lyngdoh is fouled, but Rino Anto collects the ball and whips in a superb pass that finds Vineeth in the middle. But the ref pulls play back for a foul
44' Vineeth outruns Antonio with embarrassing ease. The Kerala lad is fast, and he keeps on keeping on, doesn't he? There's not a blue shirt in support though, and Johor win the ball back
42' JDT go straight back up.... Hariss Haran has a wild shot that flies well wide
Eugenson Lyngdoh sends in a delightful corner which is met superbly by a completely unmarked Sunil Chettri. Captain Marvel's header is unsavable.
39' SUNIL CHETTRI LETS FLY!!! It's blocked well though, and corner it is
38' Nishu Kumar and Alwyn George play out an elaborate setpiece as Nishu runs over the ball and George hits it. Thing is though, this was from the halfway line. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE!!!
37' Amirul passes it back to his keeper from the BFC half. Just in case Johor's intentions weren't clear
36' The corner is filth
35' Johor play a bit of keep-ball. It's their best spell of possession in the match. They get a corner out of it as Johnson nervously clears a Safee cross
32' Rino Anto whips the cross into the West Block
31' Azamuddin tries to play in Amirul. The chasing midfielder has a better chance of crossing Silk Board without getting caught in the signal than he has of reaching that ball.
30' It's so very scrappy in the middle here. The two sides are exchanging possession with seemingly every pass
29' Vineeth and Chettri exchange passes before the former plays it to Nishu Kumar free on the left, with acres of space in front of him. The left back gets the ball stuck under his feet and JDT clear
28' Tough chance, but chance, nonetheless
27' OH MY GOODNESS LORD!!! CHETTRI HITS THE BAR WITH A SHOT FROM CLOSE DISTANCE!!!! The ball pinballed around the area as Chettri, Johnson and Lyngdoh took it in turns to shoot at goal, and with the final effort Chettri can only find the woodwork with a shot from an acute angle
25' A nice touch from Amirul wins JDT some space, but his pass is cut out superbly by Anto
24' YELLOW for Antonio. I can almost see Gomez's vein popping! I am not sure what that was all about, but the ref looks pissed
23' Johor still has a mean counter on them though, thanks to the pace of Safee - and the striker wins a throw deep in BFC territory
22' Watson lifts a ball right into the box, Fazly whacks it up. The Malaysian champions look really frazzled here. I cannot understand the reason behind their panic - they are unbeaten in their last 31 games, and they are in the driver's seat here
21' Vineeth tries to wriggle his way into the box, but he is stopped in his tracks by Antonio. The crowd howls for a penalty - that's not happening
19' BFC fans reading this, take heart - Johor are defending like they have never heard what the term "defence" means
17' The corner is put in deep, and creates all sorts of confusion. The ball is worked out to Lyngdoh who puts in a delightful ball that just evades the diving Vineeth. Nishu Kumar finally gets a shot away, but Izham parries it away.
16' After more patient passing, the ball is worked out to Nishu Kumar on the left. He swings it in and Marcos Antonio makes a complete hash of it! Corner for BFC
15' BFC need a goal, but the ball is being knocked around patiently by Bengaluru. Roca's influence is there for everyone to see.
14' Johor were not in this game at all. But a swift counter and a goalkeeping blunder mean that Johor have caught the game by the scruff of its neck
Oh Amrinder paaji!!! Safee and Safiq exchange passes at the edge of the box with some superb one-touch football before Safee unleashes one. It's straight at the BFC goalkeeper, but he can only parry it straight up. Safiq is following up and heads it into the empty net.
9' The Blues knock the ball amongst themselves with purpose before releasing the rampant Anto on the right. His ball is in delightful but evades everyone in the box. Chettri receives the ball on the far post, but takes far too long on the ball.
8' Johor are playing utter tripe here. Every other pass is one back to the opposition. BFC on the other are playing some sublime stuff
7' Superb ball in from Rubio, and Lyngdoh ALMOST breaks into the box. He's muscled off the ball though
6' Rino Anto is in the mood today. He bombards forward and gives the ball to Vineeth. The striker sends it back with a delightful touch. The right back runs out of pitch, though - well shepherded out by Azammuddin that
5' Safiq has started nervously, He loses possession in the middle of the park, and Cameron breaks forward. Lyngdoh holds up the ball, but kills the momentum, and Johor have the ball again
3' It's early on, but the pattern is much as we expected - Johor attacking, BFC countering. Chettri has started on the left, and he puts in a promising looking cross. But Vineeth cannot reach it. Rino Anto puts an end to that move by smacking it handsomely wide
2' Safiq takes a freekick in a promising position. It is utter rubbish. Bengaluru almost counter, but the Johor captain does well to stop them.
1' FEISTY START. Rino Anto smacks into Azammudin on the Bengaluru left.
Peep! KICKOFF!!!Bengaluru in their blue. Johor in their famous red
The West Block Blues unviel two new banners, one has "Together we can" written in it, the other has "Two I-Leagues and a Fed Cup" on it. Not the most imaginative, but much like their former coach Westwood - it's blunt, true and straight to the point.
The players are walking out, Sunil Chettri is a picture of concentration. India's captain Marvel was not at his best in the first leg, the home team will need him to recover in this one.
It is the Champions of India vs. the Champions of Malaysia... this is going to be EPIC isn't it
To save you the trouble of scrolling down, here are the lineups - Bengaluru XI (4-4-2): Amrinder; Nishu Kumar, Juanan, Johnson, Anto; George, Rubio, Watson, Lyngdoh; Chettri, VineethJohor XI (5-4-1): Izham; Aidil, Azrif, Antonio, Kunanlan, Fazly; Amirul, Safiq (C), Azamuddin, Safee; Hariss
The Iraqi Air Force Club won the other semifinal btw... whoever progresses here has a tough task ahead of them in the final
The stadium is JAM PACKED. And Boy! Are they LOUD!!!!
EDDIE MAKES HIS DEBUT TODAY.No, no, don't check the line-ups again. Eddie the Eagle is BFC's brand new mascot. What a match to unveil him at, eh?He's wearing 00 on his back.
"BFC! BFC! BFC!" The crowd is building quite an atmosphere at the Kanteerava!! IT IS ABSOLUTELY ELECTRIC!!!!!
BFC are warming up by kicking the ball around with a rondo. That's Roca's doing, right there
The Referee for the game is Ali Hasan Ebrahim Abdulnabi of Bahrain. If he has read, or heard, what Gomez had to say before the match, HE WILL BE UNDER PRESSURE. Some Fergie-esque mind games Mr Gomez is playing here - though he may have a point or two. Asian football needs it's refereeing standards to go UP if they are to compete with the rest of the world
The Banners are back too! One of them reads "Make us dream" with a picture of Albert Roca.Can the Barcelona man do that?
The atmosphere is already building up. The famous West Block Blues have filled their stand and are chanting their goosebump-inducing "When the Blues go marching in"
Johor XI (5-4-1): Izham; Aidil, Azrif, Antonio, Kunanlan, Fazly; Amirul, Safiq (C), Azamuddin, Safee; Hariss Subs are - Farizal, Gary, Shakir, Chanturu, Eldstald, Fadhli, Azinee
Bengaluru XI (4-4-2): Amrinder; Nishu Kumar, Juanan, Johnson, Anto; George, Rubio, Watson, Lyngdoh; Chettri, VineethThe great news for BFC fans is that Keegan Perreira has made it to the bench!!Along with R. Vishal, Len, Ranjan, Daniel, Mawia and Sawmtea.Udanta Singh is not fit enough to make it to the bench
Johor's Mario Gomez is channeling his inner Zico. He isn't best pleased with the refereeing
"I have been working for 40 years in football and I have never seen referees like this in my life. I want to talk now before the game"
"This is about referees. We have been working hard on for one year and I don't want the same problems to haunt my players. We want to fight with Bengaluru and only them, we want to play. We want fair play for everybody and not just for one side. After this, whatever the result, it's okay"
"Last time we played Bengaluru, the referee was very bad for us. But also when we played South China, we received seven yellow cards. We got six yellow cards against Bengaluru"
The Managers have been speaking - Bengaluru's Albert Roca are definitely not talking JDT lightly
"Well, first of all, I have to say that this team (JDT) is still the champions of the competition. They are obviously the favourites for me. But it is a nice opportunity for us. We are in this second leg with a good result and can try to make the final for the first time in an Indian club’s history"
The Bengaluru club are on the doorsteps of history. If they go through here, they will become the first Indian club to reach the final of the AFC Cup. They arrived at the doorstep courtesy a magical
Eugenson Lyngdoh goal that dragged the Indian club over the line after Johor dominated for large periods but couldn't convert their chances.
Albert Roca's side are still searching for their identity. Under Ashley Westwood, BFC were a direct, long-ball club, but Roca (formerly of club you may have heard of – FC Barcelona) is trying to implement a little more of a possession-oriented passing game.
You and I know both know how Westwood have gone about this – 2 banks of blue defending en masse – but it will be interesting to see how Roca goes about this.
Mario Gomez has a major headache here – his prime attacking weapons in Pereyra Diaz and Martin Lucero are out through suspension and he needs a goal from somewhere.
With JDT set to attack from the off, and with the counterattacking prowess of BFC, this should be an absolute CRACKER.
They've been building this up as the biggest game in Indian club football history, and they are not wrong.
IT IS ON!!!
Bengaluru FC – The left back Keegan Perreira is out with a long-term injury. Rino Anto switched flanks to fill in the hole. Udanta Singh and Lalcchuanmawia (Fanai) are set to miss out, too as they continue to struggle with injury.
Johor Darul Ta'zim – If you think Bengaluru FC have players missing, wait till you get a load of what JDT have to deal with. Their three best players – Pereyra Diaz, Martin Lucero and Amri Yahyah - all miss out by virtue of having picked up a booking each in the first leg. Pereyra is their creative hub, while Lucero is their goalscorer in chief. Mario Gomez has a massive headache to solve here.
The Malaysian giants have bossed the Indian outfit in the few meetings they've had. Except for the last one – where the Indian champions came back with a valuable away goal.
Games Played – 4; Bengaluru Win - 0 ; Draw – 1; Johor Win – 3
Venue: Sree Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru, Karnataka
Kickoff time: 7.00 PM (1900) IST
Telecast: Star Sports 1/ HD (English)
Bengaluru FC (4-4-2) : Amrinder Singh; Rino Anto, Juanan, Johnson, Ranjan; George, Alvaro, Watson, Eugene; Vineeth, Chettri
Johor Darul Ta'zim (4-5-1) : Tarmizi; Aidil, António, Fazly, H. Harun; Safiq, Kunanlan, Azammuddin, Robbat, Sali; Azinee
Johor are desperate for a goal. A 0-0 won't do them any good, what with Bengaluru having an away goal in the bag. They are chasing the match, and will go all out for the vital goal. This could leave them open to the lightning BFC counters.
This should be fun.
Prediction: Bengaluru FC 1 – 1 Johor Darul Ta'zim (BFC to go through on penalties)