A first-half penalty from Joshua Walker was enough for Bengaluru FC, as they defeated Warriors FC in their AFC Cup group match.
The match saw the home team miss many of their first team regulars, who were all with the Indian national team. However, they didn’t let that affect them as they went about the task at hand with great professionalism. This win sees them move on to six points from three matches, as they remain second in the group.
Bengaluru’s pressure led to the goal from the penalty spot
The home side started the match cautiously, as the sought to keep possession and minimise the chances of risk. They went close the first time when Vineeth’s effort on goal was cancelled out due to an offside decision being called.
Warriors were dependent on their striker Velez for acting as the outlet, as they looked to find him with the long diagonal passes, but Johnson and Osano had the situation under control. Another opportunity for Bengaluru came thanks to Rooney’s pressing, but he was offside as he looked to head Beikhokhei’s cross into the goal.
Shu Jiayi and Mohamed Rahim started linking up well for the visitors as they looked to get some attacks going. The home team retaliated through Walker, whose shot from Shankar’s lay-off was parried to safety.
The goal came when Vineeth was brought down in the box by Bennett. Joshua Walker stepped up and calmly slotted the ball past the goalkeeper to get the all-important breakthrough.
Warriors’ only chance of note was when Rahim’s free-kick was pushed over the bar by Ralte in the Bengaluru goal.
Steady second half sees the game through
The second half saw the Blues control the game, as they kept possession and kept looking for openings if any, patiently. They were intent on not allowing the Singaporean side any clear attempts on goal, and succeeded to a great extent.
The visitors did get a chance on the break, but Ralte did very well to get a strong hand to Velez’s powerful shot, and helped keep the score 1-0 in favour of the home side.
Shankar was very good in the centre of midfield for Bengaluru, as he controlled the tempo of the game, kept probing and helped keep possession. Joshua Walker played in an advanced role, and looked to link-up with Rooney whenever given the chance.
A professional performance in the end from the Indian side, as they overcame the absence of their main players like captain Sunil Chhetri, Robin Singh and Eugeneson Lyngdoh to notch up a comfortable and important 1-0 win.Published 17 Mar 2015, 22:39 IST